Lily go level at top – but have crucial game in hand

Dave McQueenie
Dave McQueenie
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Easthouses Lily moved onto level points with Leith Athletic as the three-horse race for The Central Taxis Premier League took another twist at the weekend.

A 16th minute strike from Mark Brown gave Lily a narrow win over the Meadowbank outfit.

Derek Riddel’s side pushed for an equaliser in the closing stages with Euan Campbell curling a shot wide, and Lily keeper John Falconer had to pull off a superb reflex save to tip Keith Murray’s pile-driver over the bar.

But with one game in hand over their title rivals, Dave McQueenie believes the result can provide Lily with the impetus to go on and achieve league success following their promotion from the First Division last season. “The psychological boost this result will give us could be significant,” said the Lily manager. It was a great win against a really good side, Mark Brown took his goal really well.”

McQueenie also believes the race for the championship could go to the wire and finds it refreshing to see three teams competing for the prize because Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale had the title sown up with three games to spare at this stage last season.

“Some games can become a little mundane at this stage of the season if teams don’t have a lot to play for or the league has already been decided, but that isn’t the case this season.”

“It’s a great advert for East of Scotland Football to see three teams going for the league, there are six games left for us and both Lothian and Leith have to play each other again so it’s all to play for.”

Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale will not give up their title without a fight and they moved to within a point of the top two with a resounding 5-1 win over Coldstream at Saughton.

Alan McDonough, Scott Moffat, Sean Wringe, Liam O’Donnell, and a penalty from Darren Smith ensured an emphatic win for the reigning champions with Jake Rutherford replying for Coldstream.

“Every game is a must-win for all the sides involved at the top just now,” said Lothian boss Raymond Carr. “Easthouses are in a good position, Leith are still a very good side and our thoughts now turn to a derby against Tynecastle next week which won’t be easy.”

In Saturday’s other fixture, Craigroyston let a two-goal lead slip to Tynecastle at St Mark’s Park. Goals from Craig Anderson – his third consecutive goal – and Craig Dickson, had given Craigroyston a two-goal cushion. But Tynecastle fought back with Tony Muir and Bradley Scott netting in the last 15 minutes to salvage a late draw for the Fernieside outfit.

Spartans EOS match at Stirling University fell victim to the rain on Saturday morning.