A last-minute goal for Aberdeen robbed Edinburgh Schools’ Under-15s of a point in their second National Cup group match at Spartans Academy on Friday.
The 3-2 loss for Edinburgh means they will have to secure all three points away to Fife in their final match to have any hope of qualifying for the quarter-final which comes with a first or second-place finish – the side currently sit in third place with just one point.
Both sides had early chances to grab the opener with Aberdeen’s Josh Milne firing over the bar inside the box and then a strong run from Edinburgh striker Kyle Hunter got him into the area, only for a last-ditch tackle to prevent him getting a shot away.
Edinburgh looked comfortable on the ball in midfield with Kyle Bell and Trevor O’Hara pulling the strings in the centre of the park and both were doing their bit to create openings for their front men.
Ethan Houliston was close to putting Edinburgh in front with a header inside the box after a cross from Hunter hung in the wind, giving his teammate time to pick his spot, but he headed straight into the arms of Aberdeen’s Cameron Jarvie.
Five minutes before half time and the away side broke the deadlock. Matt Cumming was brought down in the box after an impressive run and teammate Cameron Moultrie coolly slotted past Fraser Britton into the bottom corner. Edinburgh looked eager to draw level early in the second period and they started on the front foot with Aberdeen hemmed into their own half.
Ogi Yeldrum was inches away from putting his side on level terms when he fired wide of the post after Bell had showed great skill to flick the ball over a defender before squaring to the striker.
It was only a matter of time before Edinburgh got their equaliser and moments later they found it. Harry Puller leapt in the box to meet a cross from the left wing and Jarvie parried his header but only succeeded in pushing it back out to Puller and the central defender bundled it into the net.
The home side grew in confidence from their leveler and with their vociferous schoolmates in full song from the stand at the main pitch, they took the lead.
Yeldrum met a cross at the back post but could only send his header off the frame of the goal. It turned out to be quite the assist though, as the ball fell back to O’Hara who pounced on the loose ball before rifling into the net.
Their lead was short-lived however, as straight from kick-off Aberdeen restored parity when the ball broke to Josh Milne and the striker fired into the net from 15 yards.
It was end to end stuff at this point in the swirling wind as both sides looked for their third goal of the afternoon.
However, it wasn’t long before the swashbuckling period at the beginning of the second half had eluded and things started to get a little scrappy. Both sides were then reduced to ten-men with ten minutes remaining after O’Hara and Laurie Cunningham lashed out at each other in the middle of the park.
With little in the way of chances in the closing minutes, it looked set that the match would end all square, only for Aberdeen to be awarded a free-kick on the edge of the box in the final minute.
From 20 yards out, Ryan Silvers struck his set-piece low and with the aid of a deflection his effort nestled in the bottom corner to leave keeper Britton helpless.
Edinburgh: Fraser Britton, Sean McCorkindale, Lewis McKay, Josh Williamson, Harry Puller, Callum Fitzpatrick, Ethan Houliston, Trevor O’Hara, Kyle Hunter, Ogi Yeldrum, Ryan Farrell, Damien Mullen, Jack Murray, Liam McCabe.
Aberdeen: Cameron Jarvie, Craig Armstrong, Joe Barclay, Lachlan Wood, Lewis Paton, Matt Cumming, Jack Odlin, Laurie Cunningham, Josh Milne, Cameron Moultrie, Ryan Silvers, Oscar Slater, Scott Brooks, Cammy Stephen, Ethan Garden, Kalvin Mundie.