Shippy blow chance to progress in cup.
The Shipyard failed to progress through the group stages and into the quarter finals of the East of Scotland Qualifying League Cup as they were held to a 2-2 draw with Eyemouth United at Warner Park. Civil Service Strollers’ 1-1 draw with Spartans EOS means that it is them who progress by the virtue of conceding one goal less than the Shipyard having both secured four points and both scoring five goals. It should never have came to that situation as the Shipyard really should have came away from Eyemouth with the three points but a series of missed opportunities, particularly in the first half, and a lack of composure in the final few minutes allowed the home team to secure a draw. With Shaun Keatings suspended, Craig Lowe, Kevin Masson and Brendan Napier all unavailable and Alan Clark still out injured it was a depleted Shipyard squad that travelled south.
As usual at Eyemouth the wind seemed to be stronger than anywhere else and it was the visitors who had it behind them in the first half. Neither team created a chance in the first few minutes but it was the Shipyard who had the first effort in the 12th minute when Ethan Anderson, playing in a more advanced wingback roll, who got into the box and saw his volley from 15yards well saved by David Lugget in the Eyemouth goals. Eyemouth hit back immediately but Gavin Burrell’s header lacked direction. The Shipyard’s Pete Bell saw a long range effort held by the keeper before teammate Dale Robertson spurned the best chance of the match so far. Ewan Henderson laid a long thrown-in into his path but his shot from 18yards was poor. In the 25th minute Robertson delivered a great free-kick into the Eyemouth box that saw Lugget having to look sharp to push the ball away. A Joe Samson long throw into the six yard box only needed a touch to give the Shipyard the lead but nobody could supply that vital touch. The Shipyard were stunned in the 29th minute when the home team took the lead, very much against the run of play. A deep cross from the left was missed by all of the Shipyard defence allowing Connor Lough the opportunity to head the ball back across goal and in at the far post. Shipyard keeper Jordan Mushet then had to make a save as he tipped a speculative effort over the bar rather than risk trying to catch the ball. The Shipyard passed up a good chance to equalise in the 41st minute when Henderson drove into the Eyemouth box and as Lugget came out to meet him his pass inside only found a home defender who was able to clear for a corner. From Samson’s set piece Blair Smart headed wide at the front post.
With the elements behind them now Eyemouth started the second half on top and they missed a couple of half chances in the opening minutes. Aiden Lauder then missed a good chance from the corner of the six yard box before the game exploded in the 50th minute. After a tussle between Billy Rogerson and Eyemouth’s Alan Jess, the home player was ordered off after he clearly head butted Rogerson. In the 61st minute the Shipyard were level when Smart stooped low at the back post to head in Samson’s corner from around a yard out. The home team were still in the match and Todd Arthur had to produce a good blocking tackle to keep the home team out. The Shipyard took the lead in the 78th minute when Doig was played in by a delightful Samson pass and although Lugget got a hand to his strike he could not keep the ball out. Taking the lead seemed to unsettle the Shipyard players as knowing the win would likely seem them qualify from the group. This gave the ten men the initiative and a free header at the back post was not far away. Eyemouth drew level with five minutes remaining and what a strike it was. A set piece was only cleared to around 25 yards and Alan Spiers crashed an unstoppable shot into the roof of the net. Eyemouth sub Sean Campbell then dragged his shot wide as Eyemouth went close to winning it in the final minutes.
Manager Myles Allan was far from impressed with his team’s display, particularly in the first half as he commented “ I was really disappointed with the way we played in the first half especially. We played far too many long balls and that’s not how we want to play. We also found ourselves getting involved in too many incidents that took our concentration away from playing football. We did compete a lot better in the second half and that’s something that you have to do when you go down to Eyemouth but it shouldn’t be to the detriment of playing passes but that’s what happened”.
Looking at the section as a whole he said “It was by far our worst performance of the three games and we missed a good chance to progress in the cup. Eyemouth deserved a point and although their equaliser was a wonder strike, we should have defended it better in the lead up”
Eyemouth United: D. Lugget; J. Wilson; A. Spiers; G. McInnes; D. Burns; S. Williamson; A. Lauder; T. Wyman (S. Campbell); G. Burrell (K. Wood); A. Jess; C. Lough (J. Thomson). Unused Subs: J. Watt & M. Scott.
Burntisland Shipyard: J. Mushet; B. Rogerson; E. Anderson; B. Smart; A. MacDonald; T. Arthur; P. Bell (JP. McPhail); C. Samson; E. Henderson (D. Watt); K. Buckley (A. Doig); D. Robertson.
Referee: R. Lee.