Haddington Athletic 0 GLENAFTON ATHLETIC 3
Scorers : Boyd , Mallan 2
The Glens visited the Royal Burgh of Haddington for the 1st Round of the Scottish Junior Cup.The traditional friendly welcome was short-lived as the local side fired up from the kick-off seemed intent to combat the Glens passing game with a brand of physical football often wrongly attributed to Ayrshire sides. Haddington raced to a 3-1 lead in the yellow card stakes, with the Glens Joe Carruth being booked for defending himself in his own penalty box from an onslaught by the Haddie known as Aldo !
The Glens did well to weather the early periods without retaliation and were soon in complete control of the game, witnessed by Gary Matthews seldom being troubled in the Glens goal. Stevie Agnew's tormenting runs and tantalising one-twos gave the Haddington defence little peace on the left , whilst Carruth helped new boy Brian Miller settle in on the right with some excellent service. Craig Bingham, Stuart Boyd and Steve Mallan lead the assault through the middle. It was Boyd that broke the deadlock with a brilliant strike from the edge of the box on the 20 minute mark and the Haddington heads went down as quickly as Stillian Petrov does against Killie ! Soon after the same player was denied what seemed to be a stonewall penalty and denied a second goal when his looping header came off the cross bar. With ten minutes of the half remaining Mallan did what Mallan does and scored a spectacular goal, this one a glorious volley from outside the box struck with such ferocity that it could only be caught by a speed-camera.
2-0 to the Glens.
What was that ?
It was Stevie 'Wonder' Mallan.
Matters went from very bad to worse for Haddington as they were reduced to 10 men, a second yellow card following a rash challenge at the edge of the box. The referee's decision was met with forlorn pleas from the home-side 'not to the spoil the game', but they were now paying the price for the collection of cards they had amassed in the early period of the game.
Second-half stramash - with the referee the centre of attention !
To their credit the 10-men started the second-half with a new found sense of purpose and began to pin the Glens back in their own half and create some half-chances of their own, mainly of the long shot variety. However,with no rewards for their effort and of course a man down, Haddington soon faded and the Glens enjoyed large periods of possession and but for some near misses, poor finishing and a wonder-save from the Haddington goalie could have added to their tally.
Aldo the Haddie, was lucky not to see red after a late lunge on Dale Beattie, but was not so lucky when the second yellow did eventually appear after some petty retaliation to shirt-pulling by the Glens. Indeed a number of petty bookings littered the second-half as the referee, perhaps snow-blinded by his fluorescent top, seemed determined to stop the game at every opportunity. The Glens continued to dominate and with a few minutes remaining Mallan slalomed his way past a number of defenders in the box before stabbing the ball past the Haddington goalie , a cute goal from the acutest of angles.
Gordon Dalziel 's first Junior Cup tie ends in success.
Speculation suggests it may be his last game as the Glens Manager, although Terry Christie has now emerged as a possible contender for the Raith Rovers job.
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