Lowland League leaders Bonnyrigg Rose hail striker Kieran McGachie for Braves win

Bonnyrigg Rose boss Robbie Horn praised match-winner Kieran McGachie after he headed in late on to sink Caledonian Braves as the New Dundas Park men increased their lead at the Lowland League summit to 13 points with a 2-1 victory.

By Scott Thomson
Monday, 27th December 2021, 5:56 pm
Bonnyrigg manager Robbie Horn
Bonnyrigg manager Robbie Horn

Horn was full of praise for McGachie, as he revealed his big striker has been playing through the pain barrier for a number of weeks, and even considered taking him off to protect him before he struck.“It’s a massive three points for us,” said Horn. “That’s the character of the players, they just kept on going there. Kieran has been struggling for quite a while with an injury but he just kept on ploughing through it, I’m delighted he got that goal, for me he was man of the match.

“He was brilliant, they defended set pieces really well against them but in open play, especially in the first half, they struggled to deal with him.

“He’s struggling with an injury and you’re thinking ‘Should I take him off and try and protect him a bit?’ but I just couldn’t do it in the situation of the game, he’s a massive player for us. It’s credit to him that he gets up and gets on with it, he just wants to play.”

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Rose didn’t make it easy for themselves. Despite Lee Currie sending them into the interval a goal ahead with his penalty strike, it wasn’t quite the lead their dominance merited as they pinned Braves back for the majority of the first half.

They had all the territory but didn’t force Braves goalkeeper Chris Henry into much action, with Bradley Barrett coming closest to doubling their lead with a Braves defender cleared off the line.

The visitors took confidence from the fact they were only a goal behind and caught Rose cold as they equalised through frontman Marc Kelly who headed in past goalkeeper Michael Andrews at the back post.

Braves were much improved and went toe-to-toe with Rose in search of a winner as play swung from end to end. Rose looked most likely to find a winner via a set piece as they racked up over ten corners in the second half, and so it proved as McGachie headed in Currie’s corner-kick in added on time.

Rose now turn their attention to a New Year’s Day visit to England as they first foot Berwick Rangers, as Horn added:

“In the first half we dominated the game, I don’t think they got in our penalty box in the first half. I said to the players after the game, that it was a lesson for us that you’ve got to take our chances when they come along. We shouldn’t have given them an opportunity to get back into the game, we started the second half a wee bit slack and they got their goal.

“It became a bit of a basketball match at times because we continued to go forward and left gaps. Credit to them, I though they defended the set pieces really well throughout the game, but we always looked a threat at them.

“Berwick will be tough. We played them earlier in the season and it was an even first half, but we took control in the second and it was comfortable in the end.”