Five eye-catching Scottish Cup second-round matches

The draw for the second round of the 2020/21 Scottish Cup was made on Monday night, with the 20 teams from the Scottish Championship and League One entering the fray.

Tuesday, 29th December 2020, 12:32 pm
Updated Tuesday, 29th December 2020, 12:46 pm
The road to the Scottish Cup fina has already begun for several teams

The draw threw up a number of eye-catching pairings with East of Scotland and Lowland League teams facing second or third tier opposition and some lengthy journeys involved, such as Annan's trek to Formartine or Ayr United’s 440-mile round trip to take on Elgin City.

After some shocks in the first round there are still 15 non-SPFL sides at the time of writing aiming to upset the odds and advance to the third round of Scotland's oldest senior football tournament.

Airdrieonians v Edinburgh City

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The Citizens survived an early scare against Lowland League side Caledonian Braves before triumphing 3-1 at Ainslie Park in round one and they will fancy their chances against Ian Murray's Airdrie side – especially after defeating the Diamonds at the Penny Cars Stadium last month in the Betfred Cup.

The League One side have only won two competitive fixtures at home this season – a 2-0 victory over Peterhead in October and a 5-0 drubbing of Clyde in November – but strikers Dale Carrick, Callum Gallagher, and Kyle Connell have amassed 12 goals between them and players such as Thomas Robert and Griffin Sabatini are catching the eye in midfield.

City have suffered a couple of hiccoughs in League Two as they aim for promotion but they have plenty of firepower and experienced personnel capable of causing Airdrie problems.

Dundee v Bonnyrigg Rose Athletic or Bo’ness United

Never miind the fact that the first-round clash between Bonnyrigg and Bo’ness should be a cracker, the victors have landed a plum tie against Championship side Dundee.

The Dark Blues are currently fourth in the second tier but have had a bit of a Jekyll and Hyde season; recently throwing away a three-goal lead in just 15 minutes to draw 3-3 at home to Dunfermline before an Osman Sow hat-trick clinched a 3-1 win at Queen of the South.

Bo’ness are playing their maiden season in the Lowland League after winning promotion from the East of Scotland and after just ten matches are sitting in eighth place with 18 points. Bonnyrigg, third at the time of writing with 29 points and behind East Kilbride on goal difference, are a force to be reckoned with at New Dundas Park and it’s a shame the all-Lowland League cup tie in Midlothian tonight won't have any fans present.

Depending on whether the Rose or the B.U.’s advance, they have a fighting chance of causing an upset at Dens Park – depending on which Dundee side turns up.

One thing is for certain, though – the Championship side will be given a good game no matter which Lowland League side they come up against.

Buckie Thistle v Inverness Caledonian Thistle

The Jags are one of the Highland League's most decorated clubs, with 11 league titles, eight Highland League Cup wins, 13 Aberdeenshire Cup successes and a host of other silverware. In last year’s competition they saw off Civil Service Strollers 4-1 before travelling to Bonnyrigg Rose in the second round where they were beaten 2-0 but they have given a number of SPFL sides a scare in recent seasons.

Morton in 2007/08 and Brechin in 2017/18 both needed late winners to progress against Buckie by way of a 3-2 scoreline, while the Moray side took Annan Athletic to a replay in 2013/14 and twice levelled with Dunfermline before eventually succuming 5-3 in 2016/17.

In Inverness CT they face the 2014/15 winners but having beaten Albion Rovers comfortably in the previous round and given their history of running SPFL teams close in this competition they will feel confident on home turf. It’s a great pity that fans won't be allowed in as Victoria Park would be rocking for this fixture.

Camelon or Brora Rangers v Heart of Midlothian

Camelon and Brora go head-to-head at Carmuirs Park for a second time after the first clash was abandoned at half time on Saturday with the scores goalless. Whether the East of Scotland side advance or the Cattachs progress, the winners host Hearts; a formidable opponent given their recent performances in the competition. The Jam Tarts last won the trophy in 2011/12 but reached the final in 2018/19 and 2019/20, losing out to Celtic on both occasions.

Having been knocked out of the Betfred Cup by Alloa, Robbie Neilson’s side will be wary of the threat posed by seemingly inferior opposition. The magic of the cup combined with home advantage for either Camelon or Brora mark this out as a potential banana skin for Hearts in a tie that may well be picked for TV.

East Fife v Tranent Juniors

Given how well East Stirlingshire are going in the Lowland League their resounding defeat by Tranent Juniors in the first round may have come as a bit of a surprise. Possibly not for anyone who has been keeping an eye on the Belters’ league progress this season. The Shire may have lost just twice on league duty but the Belters currently sit top of the East of Scotland Premier Division with eight wins and four draws from 12 games and have lost just twice at Foresters Park in 2020. They’ve also only lost twice on the road in competitive fixtures and while East Fife currently sit just five points off bottom place in League One they have lost just one competitive fixture at New Bayview in the whole of 2020.

However, four of their last five Scottish Cup home games have ended in defeat with Brora Rangers and BSC Glasgow recording wins in 2018 and 2019 respectively so Tranent will fancy their chances in Methil.

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