Last kick is a sickening blow.
After last week’s poor showing the Shipyard turned in a much better performance against Eyemouth, especially defensively, and were denied a deserved victory by a freak goal in the 94th minute. The last kick of the ball actually. Myles and his players would have gained a bit of confidence after their midweek friendly win over Rosyth Juniors, though he still had a few absentees from his squad as Pete Bell and Kevin Masson were still suspended and Stuart Blake, Gavin Bridges and Grant Blyth were unavailable. The squad was boosted by the loan signing of local lad John Paul McPhail from Cowdenbeath. Eyemouth are now being managed by the ex Hearts and Celtic star Mike Galloway.
Warner Park is on the top of a hill and even a slight breeze feels like a gale up there and with the wind behind them Eyemouth looked to capitalise on the elements early on. In the second minute a corner fell to George Windram inside the box and his effort was not too far away. Eyemouth took the lead in the 6th minute when a cross from the right was turned into the net from around six yards by centre forward Sean Phillips. As the half wore on the Shipyard players were becoming more and more frustrated at the perceived lack of action the referee was taking to some tough challenges the Eyemouth players were putting in, though any complaint was met with a yellow card. The visitors could not make many inroads against the strong home defence though the Eyemouth attack was not causing too many problems to the Shipyard defence. That changed though in the 39th minute when Phillips got on the end of a long ball and bore down on goal. Jordan Mushet was up to the task as he stood big and knocked away Phillips’ shot with his leg. The Shipyard had a big let off in the 43rd minute when Alan Jess should have done better that scoop his shot over the bar from close range after a good passing move.
The Shipyard made a good start to the second half with the roles reversed and in the 51st minute home keeper Adam Mutch had to be on his toes to gather a Brendan Napier free-kick. There was huge controversy two minutes later when Craig Lowe went on a good run from just inside the Eyemouth half. He got well inside the Eyemouth box and squared the ball to Renato Sartarello. The pass took out the keeper and Sartarello’s shot was blocked on the line by the arm of the Eyemouth defender. Surely a penalty and a red card? No, the referee was the only person that never seen the incident and the ball was scrambled away, much to the disgust of the Shipyard players and officials. It looked like a matter of time before the Shipyard scored and the goal duly came five minutes later. Napier played a great pass to Ewan Fotheringham and he drilled the ball into the corner of the net from around sixteen yards. The Shipyard took the lead in the 72nd minute with a classic goal. Lee Henderson delivered a majestic cross and Sartarello rose high to power his header into the net. Unfortunately the Shipyard did not hold that lead for long as when the ball broke to Kieran Bullen at the edge of the box, his shot hit the inside of the post and managed to cross the line at the other side of the goal. The Shipyard kept going and still looked able to score again and they did just that with a piece of quick thinking. A corner in the 84th minute was quickly taken by Dale Robertson to Napier, who beat two men on the byeline and his shot from the narrowest of angles found its way into the net despite the valiant efforts of the Eyemouth defence to keep it out. However, it would probably be one for the dubious goals panel to sort out, though Brendan was adamant that it had crossed the line before the Eyemouth player got a touch. Adam Doig almost sealed it for the Shipyard but his volley from the edge of the box flew narrowly wide. It was hard to see the action in the Shipyard box with the sun being so low but a dangerous free-kick played in was eventually scrambled clear. The Shipyard were dealt a sickening blow with the last kick of the match. A ball into the box was cleared to just outside the area and fell kindly to Stewart Wright. He did not make good connection and it looked like a harmless effort until it dipped just under the bar and left Mushet helpless. Who knows if he meant it? But to be fair, he probably didn’t care anyway as he gained his team an unlikely point.
The last time Myles was here we thought he was going to jump off the cliff so obviously he was happier after this match and said “I can’t fault anyone for effort this afternoon. Obviously it is a very disappointed dressing room as all of us felt that we were worthy of the three points, especially after dominating the majority of the second half. However, if we are going to leave guys unmarked at the edge of the box then we always stand the chance of conceding goals like that. The first half was very scrappy, and although we tried to play out from the back, we seemed to run out of ideas once we got over the halfway line. The second half was better though and I thought we looked more threatening, with the three goals proving that point. Their big centre-half also made a great save from Renato and it’s a pity the ref never saw that as it would have been a penalty and red card for sure”.
He summed up by saying “All in all, although it’s a horrible way to end the match, there were far more positives than negatives and I’ve got a head-ache for next week with Gav Bridges, Pete Bell, Stuart Blake, Kev Masson & Grant Blyth all coming back into the squad”.
Teams: Eyemouth United: A. Mutch; K. Wood; A. Jess; G. Windram; S. Wright; S. Drummond; K. Bullen; G. McCrudden (S. Greenlees); S. Phillips; J. Brown (A. Speirs); J. Waugh (P. Paxton). Unused Subs: J. Rutherford & F. Aitchison.
Burntisland Shipyard: J. Mushet; A. MacDonald; L. Henderson; A. Clark; B. Smart; C. Lowe; E. Fotheringham (JP. McPhail); A. Doig; R. Sartarello (M. Morrison); B. Napier; D. Robertson. Unused Subs: C. McKay & J. Crombie.
Referee: C. Whyte.