There is little doubt that the second half of the season will be prove to the test for the 2s. They couldn’t have wished for a tougher start to 2015 with the visit of Edinburgh Rose to Peffermill in the 4th round of the Centenary cup. In my opinion Rose are one of the best passing teams in LEAFA. Not having played for a month the the home side were found disappointingly wanting against their match-fitter opponents. Bread and butter passes were missed and the visitors capitalised, retaining the ball and opening a 2 goal lead by the half hour mark. Indeed they were unfortunate not to be further ahead. However the Uni grew into the game and just before half time, Joe Darvill touched and turned 30 yards from goal. He played Andy Findlay in behind the right back and got on the end of Andy’s measured cut back to reduce the deficit. No more goals in the second half with the Uni probably shading the chances. Rose deserved their win but from the uni point of view the game was certainly lost in the first 30 minutes.
The second game of 2015 summed up the very worst of amateur football. The venue was Seafield. A council facility with unheated, inadequately small changing rooms that hadn’t been upgraded since I played. A sloping, poorly maintained, tight pitch covered in dog foul and a low blinding sun coupled with an aggressive opposition meant that’s his was never going be a league game for the purists. From the kick off the Inverleith players crunched into tackles but also used the sun, slope and breeze to their advantage. Playing blind however the Uni looked to counter and were soon ahead as Phil Mcnicholas was upended in the box by the Inverleith goalkeeper. Maybe a straight red but the referee showed a lenient yellow. Vince Coleman dispatched the penalty. However, Inverleith boasted some very good footballers and with 20 minutes gone, their right midfielder cut inside and curled the ball home with his left foot from 25 yards. I suspect that Jan in goal had little chance of seeing the ball never mind fielding it. Continuing the theme of mistimed tackles the Uni won their second penalty as Phil again was upended in the box. Vince repeated his previous clinical dispatch. Inverleith equalised just before half time when their big centre half diverted in a shot after the Uni had failed to adequately clear a corner kick. It was bound to be a game of 2 halves given the conditions but no-one suspected what was to ensue. Inverleith continued their physical approach and the referee finally lost his patience and the home team started to accumulate bookings. Eventually these accrued and at roughly ten minutes intervals they had players sent off. To be honest to remember the chain of events is difficult so much happened but ultimately Inverleith ended the game with with 4 men being given early baths thereby being reduced to 7 onfield players. At least one of the sending offs being a straight red. At 10 men Phil netted after the ball landed kindly to him in the box. The last 10 minutes degenerated into a 11v7 keep ball game with the Uni maintaining their discipline, running out 3-2 winners. Inverleith had 2 men sent off in the first meeting between the two teams this season losing 6-2 on that particular occasion.