A depleted 2s squad travelled to Linlithgow to play today’s East of Scotland Cup 2nd Round tie against a Thistle side who have made an excellent start to the season. With Ciaran Duffy who normally vies for one of the striking positions debuting in goal, the Uni starting 11 had an unorthodox look about it.
Playing into a strong sun the home side started the brighter being especially threatening down their right hand side. However the Uni have goals in them this season with a lot of pace in attacking areas. This proved to be the case around 15 mins when Bertie Collins drove to the byline on the left before cutting that ball back for Harald to clip home the ball after making a timely near post run. Not too surprisingly Linlithgow equalised from a driven cross from their right around the 25 minute mark, a fair return for their efforts. Collins then added a brace. The first came when after beating the right back, he looked to have overrun the ball but was able to reach it first and nick it past the advancing goalkeeper. Just on the stroke of half time from a similar position Collins finished low into the net at the goalkeepers near post after once again having outpaced the home defence. Half time 3-1.
Linlithgow started the second half with real intent and were soon back into game from the penalty spot after Paul McLaughlin was adjudged to have impeded the Linlithgow left winger. The Uni were on the back foot now and the home side squandered a couple of good chances to draw level. In fairness they succeeded in this respect with 15 minutes to go when a hooked shot out of nothing went in off the base of Duffy’s far post. However it is a undeniable truth that the current 2s have a real resilience, a togetherness and never-say-die attitude. With 15 minutes to go, Yannick Seebach picked up the ball on the counter attack and showing great awareness delayed his pass until Phil McNicholas had peeled off the last defender. McNicholas collected Seebach’s well-weighted pass and though he could have shot himself he checked out and rolled the ball into the path of Harald Buurchardt who nutmegged the goalie for the Uni winner. With 10 minutes to play the Uni were running on empty with knocks and bumps taking their toll. All told, a terrific win especially considering the limited number of player choices available.
The only down side to the day were injuries to Calum Watt, Lewis Scott and Bertie Collins who all picked up knocks. Linlithgow are a good side who play to their strengths, they will be in the mix when the honours are dished out at the seasons end.
Linlithgow 3-4 Edinburgh University 2’s