View Photo Gallery | Discuss the Match | Buy Photos and Souvenirs
Bathgate Vale Pumas won the Under 13 2012/13 County Cup at Livingston FC's Braidwood Motor Company Stadium, with a 2-0 victory over Livingston FCBC. After a deadlocked first half, late goals from Monica Anderson and Robbie Drummond sealed the prestigious trophy for Bathgate.
Livingston FCBC look set to finish midtable in the top flight, but have came into their own in this competition. They saw off Shotts Victoria, Murieston United Red, Grangemouth BC and Broxburn Athletic Colts to reach the showpiece final. They went into the match as underdogs against title challenges from the same division, Bathgate Vale Pumas. Bathgate saw off their title race rivals Syngenta Colts in the semi final stage, and today was their first of two finals, with a date against Syngenta in the Jim Brady Cup final to folow.
The match kicked off with rain pouring down in West Lothian. Both sides got on with the job at hand admirably, not phased by the conditions. The first effort on goal came inside five minutes, with Robbie Drummond firing a free kick narrowly wide for Bathgate Vale.
Vale continued to take the game to their opponents, dictating the tempo of the match. Aaron McSwan thought e had given his side the lead, but Livingston goalkeeper Cameron McEwan managed to turn the ball round the post. McSwan and McEwan came head to head again a few minutes later, with the goalkeeper doing well to block at 50/50 inside the box.
Livingston started to get a foothold into the game, and made their first inroads into the the Bathgate defence in the 18th minute. Fraser Paterson thought he had found shooting space inside the box, but a superb Joseph Jamieson block ensured Bathgate's clean sheet stayed intact. Declan Wynne then went on a surging counter attacking run for Livi, and was disappointed to see the referee pull the game back for a foul, when it looked as though he had broken clear of his marker.
Both sides tried to push forward in the closing stages of the half, however efforts were limited to long range, with the respective defences and goalkeepers in control.
Half Time: Bathgate Vale Pumas 0-0 Livingston FCBC
The second half kicked off with more relentless rain hammering down on the playing arena. Both sides continued to cope well, with Bathgate once again started the half brightly. Monica Anderson's technique and link up play had been excellent from the first whistle and the Vale forward had her first shot in the early stages of the half, but it was scooped over the bar.
Livingston were then presented with their best chance of the match. Paterson found space on the right hand side of the penalty box but the angle was tight and Nathan Moffat pulled off a good save at his near post.
The chances began coming thick and fast for Bathgate. Drummond headed narrowly over; only Rayan Shariff's last ditch block denied McSwan the opening goal; and Ryan Moffat tested the Livingston goalkeeper twice within a minute, but both times McEwan's handling was excellent.
Livingston were defending courageously but in the end the pressure told. A superb driving run from Kyle Sampson saw him break clear of three yellow shirts, before offloading the ball to Andersn. She cut inside her marker before placing a left footed shot inside the bottom right hand corner. The Bathgate support went wild, they had their goal (click here to watch video of the goal).
Bathgate's goals were like buses - after waiting an hour for one, two came along at once. Drummond's set piece expertise had been there for all to see from the early stages of the match, and from 25 yards he hit a hit a high shot beyond the reach of McEwan and into the net. 2-0 and Vale were in firm control of the tie (click here to watch video of the goal).
One final chance came the way of Bathgate in the closing stages, but a fantastic goal-line clearance from Lewis Cunningham denied Anderson. The referee's final whistle blew shortly after, confirming Bathgate Vale Pumas at the cup winners. Nobody could deny Bathgate their victory, but Livingston deserved a great amount of credit for making the game such a close contest.
Full Time: Bathgate Vale Pumas 2-0 Livingston FCBC