Disappointment for Shippy in season opener.
A red card and a missed penalty were the downfall for the Shipyard as they had to settle for a 1-1 draw against Eyemouth United in the East of Scotland
Qualifying League at Recreation Park. A goal up and looking comfortable in the second half, what seemed a harsh decision by the referee to send off Blair Smart for a foul in the 66th minute let Eyemouth back into the match. Although Eyemouth drew level with ten minutes remaining the Shippy had the opportunity to win the match in added time when they were eventually awarded a penalty, at the fourth time of asking, but unfortunately Kevin Masson dragged his shot wide of the post. Darrell Anthony, Gary Osborne and Ben Saunders all made their competitive debuts for the Shipyard.
There was very little goalmouth action in the early stages and it was not until the 18th minute that a chance was fashioned as Pete Bell and Smart both saw efforts blocked by the visiting defence. On the half hour mark Masson drove across the edge Eyemouth box and shot just wide of the far post. On three occasions within a short space of time the Shippy had loud claims for a penalty turned down and to further rub salt into the wounds the referee cautioned Bell and Masson for simulation although contact on both occasions had clearly been made. Eyemouth’s first chance came in the 37th minute when Sean Campbell drew a fine save from Jordan Mushet. The Shipyard took the lead two minutes later when Bell fired an unstoppable left foot drive into the top corner from the angle of the box.
Midway through the second half Smart went into a challenge near the touchline and although a foul was committed the red card that was brandish was extremely harsh to say the least. This gave the visitors fresh impetus and they equalised with ten minutes remaining when substitute Dean Walker latched on to a poor headed clearance and fired the ball into the far corner of the net. As the match moved into added time the Shipyard were handed a golden opportunity to win the match when Anthony drove into the box only to see his run halted illegally and finally the ref pointed to the spot. Masson took the kick but his shot was dragged wide of the keeper Mutch’s left hand post. There was still time left for Eyemouth’s sub Max Scott to be shown a second yellow card that saw both teams finished with ten men.
Manager Alex Lowe was far from happy after the match when he said “It was a disappointing performance in a game we should have won. The game was very disjointed with too many stoppages in the play. Our general passing was poor and communication between the players was not good enough”. He went on “Eyemouth kept it tight and hit on the break pretty well and we found ourselves on the back foot with Blair Smart’s soft sending off after 66 minutes. The referee also booked two of our guys for diving then denied us a stonewall penalty when Adam Doig was bundled over by the Eyemouth goalkeeper. We still should have won the game after missing a last minute penalty. Although our quality was not good there was no doubt the effort was there and I am sure we will improve in the coming weeks. I would like to wish Eyemouth the best of luck for the season”.
Burntisland Shipyard: J. Mushet; C. Lowe; B. Smart; T. Arthur; D. Anthony; A. MacDonald (B. Saunders); E. Henderson; P. Bell (R. Kelly); K. Masson; A. Doig; G. Osborne (JP. McPhail).
Unused Sub: R. Couser.
Eyemouth United: A. Mutch; D. Boyne; P. Love; A. Spiers; T. Wyman; B. Muir; A. Lauder; P. Tillbrook; S. Campbell; J. Anderson; J. Rutherford.
Subs: M. Scott; J. Thomson; D. Walker; K. Davidson.
Referee: K. Hall.