A second-half Ross Allum goal, at long last, brought Edinburgh City their first competitive win since May. They left Station Park with a 1-0 win over Forfar Athletic in last night’s William Hill Scottish Cup second round replay.
Gary Jardine’s team will now face League Two East Fife in the third round at Bayview Stadium on November 26.
The City manager made five changes from the team that drew 1-1 on League business three days earlier. In came Allum, Ross Guthrie, Aaron Dunsmore, Sean Muhsin and Shaun Harrison. Joe Mbu, Ian McFarland and Ouzy See dropped to the bench, while Craig Beattie and Hibs loanee Ryan Porteous weren’t involved at all. Jamie Bain returned from suspension for the hosts in place of Greg Warwick, while Josh Peters replaced Gavin Swankie.
As they did in the previous encounter, the hosts started brightly. Thomas O’Brien arrowed a low drive towards the bottom corner that Andrew Stobie did well to tip wide with both hands. David Cox’s resulting corner was met by Andy Munro, but the big centre back could only head over.
Cox again was the provider, tis time from the right when his cross was met by Jim Lister, but he couldn’t do any better than Muro, producing the same result.
Mbu didn’t have to wait long for a return to action, replacing Jordan Caddow who was forced off with an injury after quarter of an hour.
Muhsin gave Grant Adam his first taks of the evening, aiming for the bottom corner with a placed effort following a one-two with Guthrie, but the Forfar keeper was able to hold on.
Adam didn’t look so assured when he failed to punch a Marc Laird corner. Muhsin hooked the loose ball back in and Mark McConnell got his head on it, but couldn’t hit target, the ball bouncing narrowly wide with Adam floundering.
City were inches from taking the lead in style just after the half hour. A great searching ball from Dunsmore was taken brilliantly first time on the volley by Allum, who could only watch as the ball arced over Adam and bounced agonisingly off the top of the cross bar. The No. 9 tried again soon after, but cleared the terracing behind the goal with a wayward shot.
Allum was in again soon after the interval, but this time didn’t get enough on his lob over Adam and Stuart Munro was able to clear. Mark McConnell then fire dover before Jim Lister shot straight at Stobie from a tight angle at the other end. O’Brien again shot from distance, but his dipping volley was also straight at the City keeper.
Allum had proved City’s biggest threat so it was no surprise he opened the scoring three minutes after the hour. He burst on to Guthrie’s through ball, before checking to avoid the chasing defenders, and fired low across Adam in to the far corner for his fourth in all competitions.
The striker was then claiming a penalty when he knocked the ball past Adam and appeared to be wiped out, but referee Craig Charleston wasn’t interested.
Lister almost equalised in bizarre fashion when Gair’s diving header clearance cannoned off him, but like most of the previous efforts, ended up in Stobie’s arms.
It was less straightforward for Stobie when Cox’s free kick was met by Munro, but he showed excellent reflexes to palm it away.
The last five minutes saw The Loons bombard the City penalty area with a succession of corners, free-kicks, throw-ins and high balls, both centre backs staying up front with subtlety out the window for Garry Bollan. Keeper Adam was at one point taking throw ins on the half-way line such was their desperation.
Sub Allan Smith somehow contrived to head wide with a free header in stoppage time, and with it went Forfar’s chances of forcing an extra half an hour.
Forfar: Adam, MacKinnon, Bain (Scott 77), Munro, Malcolm, O’Brien, Cox, McCawl, Lister (Smith 84), Peters, Denholm (Swankie 77).
Edinburgh City: Stobie, Caddow (Mbu 15), Dunsmore, Harrison, Laird (McFarland 64), McKee, Guthrie, Gair, Allum (See 82), Muhsin, McConnell.
Ref: Craig Charleston.