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Cup final heartbreak for Sauchie as Mill show will to win

Mill United FC 1

Connachan 61

Sauchie Juniors FC 1

Love 59
  • Final Result: Mill United 1-1 Sauchie Juniors (Mill United win 4-3 on penalties)
  • Sunday, 06 April 2014
  • Greenfield Park, Shettleston
  • Under 21´s
  • Only Sport League Cup

Rob McCarry | YFS West Region Journalist
Author's Bio | Articles by Author | [email protected]

Revenge can be a powerful motivator and when Mill United knocked Sauchie Juniors out of the Glasgow Cup last week at the semi-final stage it provided all the more impetus for them to return the favour by claiming the Only Sport league cup at their divisional rivals expense.
 
The boys in black however would be looking to continue the pattern of dominance and claim the first part of a potential treble with both league and Glasgow cup still within their reach whilst realising that today would be no cakewalk as they had just edged out their opponents 3-2 in the last meeting between them.
 
As expected Sauchie had the bit between their teeth and started forcefully with Craig Martin and Jack Docherty combining well to create an early opening but the shot was miscued before a header from Stuart Love looped goal ward but was easily gathered by Nathan Wharton in the Mill United goal.
 
Love then received a superb, defence splitting all from the back which he controlled well and rolled across the penalty area beautifully for Docherty but Wharton showed great experience and composure to close him down and the eventual shot ricocheted off his palm and away as the game remained goalless.
 
Sauchie would have the ball in the net soon after that however but the referee was quick to disallow the effort following advice from his linesman before an angled drive from David Reid at the opposite end of the park showed that Mill were gaining a foothold in this match although Adam Young was equal to it and gathered at the second attempt.
 
Almost immediately Sauchie were back on the offensive and a shot struck into the ground by love bounced through to the unmarked Alastair Brown who timed his header well but failed to break the deadlock before the most spectacular effort of the half then followed as a free kick into the box by Mill United was well headed away past the edge of the box where it found the waiting Christopher Brannan who truck a superbly timed volley which arced over everyone and was only kept out by a superb acrobatic save by Young.
 
Darren Carroll would then have the biggest impact of anyone on events in the first period just after 20 minutes when he connected well with a shot in the box after arriving like a train, despite his effort going well wide his trailing leg was caught by someone in black and the referee had no hesitation in awarding a penalty to Sauchie. Carroll dusted himself off and stepped up but his effort was too close to Wharton and the goalie saved with minimal fuss.
 
The pressure would be kept up throughout the remainder of the opening 45 minutes but despite dominating both possession and territory heading into the break the boys in red had yet to make any meaningful in roads into the game with all their opportunities so far going to waste, Mill United seemed to be growing in stature and as half time approached one couldn’t help but wonder if Sauchie would be made to regret those missed chances come the end of the game.
  • Half Time:
  • Mill United FC
  • 0-0
  • Sauchie Juniors FC
The second half opened in much the way that the first had ended with early chances for Sauchie falling to Anthony McTaggart and Carroll but nothing coming from them before a superb, powerful run by Greg Gunn scattered the United defence leaving Love free to receive a delicate reverse pass and take a touch before placing a left footed effort past Wharton and just inside the far post for the opening goal just before the hour.
 
Kieran Connachan may have been feeling a touch responsible for his sides going behind as he had tracked Gunn’s run across the middle of the park but failed to put the challenge in before the killer pass, he was able to quickly redeem himself though as his side broke immediately up the park and crossed into the box where had taken up a position un marked on the 18 yard line and when the ball broke to him he met it sweetly on the half volley with the outside of his boot to send it gently curving away from the outstretched fingertips of Young and into the net to restore parity no more than two minutes after it had been altered.
 
The clear cut chances were drying up as we entered the later stages and a war of attrition had begun as the tie became increasingly physical with players having given their all early on now struggling to keep up the pace. Efforts from Scott Nicol and Ross Burns would be the closest Mill would come whilst Martin, Docherty, Love and Gunn all continued to combine well and graft for Sauchie without ever being able to break the deadlock.
  • Full Time:
  • Mill United FC
  • 1-1
  • Sauchie Juniors FC

As the referee blew for time the teams couldn’t be separated and the match would head to the lottery of penalties. As one might expect it went down to the very last kick and unfortunately for the kicker Wharton read it perfectly yet again to keep out his effort and help his side pick up their first piece of silverware.

United have a chance to make it two cups in as many weeks this Sunday. They face Calderhill Thistle with more silverware at stake.

Final Result: Final Result: Mill United 1-1 Sauchie Juniors (Mill United win 4-3 on penalties)

Lineups

Mill United FC
Sauchie Juniors FC

1 Nathan Wharton
2 Paul Kane
3 Scott Nicol
4 Christopher Brannan
5 Ross Burns
6 Darren Sneddon
7 Kieran Connachan8 Brian Bittles
9 Gary McInail
10 Michael Coventry
11 David Reid
12 Dean Lindsay
14 Ben Robert Falconer
15 James Faughnan
16 John Morrice
17 Grant Kelly

1 Adam Young
2 Daniel Kelly
3 Ben Hollywood
4 Anthony McTaggart
6 Andrew Gibson
7 Craig Martin
8 Darren Carroll
9 Jack Docherty
10 Stuart Love
11 Josh walker
12 Kevin Robertson
15 Alastair Brown
17 Jason ward
19 Stephen Bone
20 Greg Gunn
21 Ross Gruar

Star Player
Mill United FC
Sauchie Juniors FC
Saving one penalty is a feat enough in itself, saving more than one puts Nathan Wharton in a category all of his own.
From taking free-kicks to efforts on goal Jack Docherty was at the heart of nearly all of Sauchies attacks.
Magic Moment
Mill United FC
Sauchie Juniors FC
The amazing first half effort from Christopher Brannan deserves to be mentioned again.
Lung bursting run and exquisite pass by Greg Gunn to set up his sides goal would have graced any match.
  • Match report and photos copyright Youth Football Scotland.
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