Amateurs: Burgh Vale in stirring six-goal fightback

Burgh Vale. Picture: Scott Thomson
Burgh Vale. Picture: Scott Thomson
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Burgh Vale came from two goals behind to win 6-3 against Midlothian Star as they booked their place in the last eight of LEAFA Sunday’s Edinburgh Cup.

The men in orange had come into the cup tie on the back of two comfortable league victories, but they faced an uphill task after Midlothian Star took a two-goal lead inside 40 minutes.

Striker Neil Miller put Star in front after just nine minutes with their first shot on target. Vale’s defence was nowhere to be seen as Miller ran in on goal before sliding the ball past goalkeeper Chris Mair.

Lee Anderson was close to putting Vale on level terms some ten minutes later, but his chipped attempt over the head of Star keeper Stuart Linton just didn’t have enough on it to take it over the line and Star cleared the danger.

Miller got his second of the match with another low finish after 39 minutes and, at this point, Star looked comfortable, only for Vale to level before half-time with two goals in two minutes.

Brent Falconer pulled a goal back after he nodded in Tom Smith’s hanging cross from the right which just dipped in time at the back post and then immediately after Star’s restart, Smith found the bottom corner when he let fly from 20 yards out.

Vale’s Adrian McAllister was a rock at the back all afternoon in his centre-back berth and on a rare forward venture he put his side in front for the first time in the match when he nodded into the net from a corner on 62 minutes.

Colin Christie, on as a second-half substitute for Vale, looked threatening upfront and he doubled their lead with 15 minutes remaining after a delightful stroke off the outside of his boot curled the ball into the top corner.

Star went down to ten men after Steven Grandison was given his second yellow card for dissent – his first coming ten minutes earlier for the same offence, and with six minutes remaining Martin Byrne put Burgh Vale 5-2 ahead with a screamer of a free kick which flew into the net.

Daniel Hunter pulled a goal back for Star with another great strike, before Christie restored Vale’s three-goal lead with just a minute remaining.

Meanwhile, unstoppable Hermiston Vale shocked Premier 1 side Fernieside in the third round of the Scottish Amateur Cup with a 2-1 away victory.

Hermiston Vale, six divisions below their opponents, pulled off an almighty shock as they continued their excellent form, in which they have lost only once in 12 matches in their maiden season in amateur football.

Vale were on top in the first period but found Fernie goalkeeper Scott Walker in inspired form as they went in search of the opener.

Michael Elder was dominating the midfield area for Vale and with a composed finish from 12 yards, he gave his side the lead early in the second half.

Derek Patterson’s dangerous cross from the right wing fell to the feet of Elder, racing into the box, and he swept the ball past Walker.

Walker then picked the ball out the back of his net for a second time as Vale went two ahead through Grant Smith – the keeper at fault this time after misjudging the flight of the ball and Smith nipped in.

Fernieside pulled a goal back with 15 minutes left and laid siege to the Vale goal in search of an equaliser, but the Sighthill side held on for a memorable cup scalp over one of LEAFA Saturday’s premier sides.

Elsewhere, Newcraighall Leith Vics sailed through a potentially hazardous Scottish Amateur Cup third round tie away to Aberdeen side Rothie Rovers, winning 3-0.

The 330-mile round trip to Rothienorman wasn’t enough to knock Premier 1 side Vics out of their stride, but they will hope for a tie closer to home when the draw is made next week.

Goalkeeper Scott Gordon had to be alert as Rovers had a few first-half chances, with his side taking time to get into the cup tie.

Vics were well in the tie by the second half though and Mark Burns gave them the lead after the interval with a strike from 18 yards.

Striker Bob Bennett then made it two with a good finish from a cutback before he got Vics’ third with a simple finish late on.