Livingston take inspiration from Falkirk cup heroics

Ben Gordon, right, is hoping for a good run in the Scottish Cup
Ben Gordon, right, is hoping for a good run in the Scottish Cup
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Livingston defender Ben Gordon says Championship rivals Falkirk’s appearance in last season’s Scottish Cup final is the benchmark for the club this term.

The Bairns put on a resilient display but succumbed to a 2-1 defeat to John Hughes’ Inverness in the showpiece fixture at Hampden six months ago and 30-year-old Gordon is eyeing a similar feat with the Lions this time.

Livi progressed to tomorrow afternoon’s fourth-round draw with a routine 3-1 victory over Peterhead at Balmoor on Saturday, Jordan White’s brace adding to Gary Glen’s 14th minute opener with home striker Rory McAllister netting a late penalty for Jim McInally’s League One side.

“We talked about Falkirk before the match how they got to the final last year so with a bit of luck in the draw, and some good performances, you never know what can happen,” Gordon said. “We just need to go on from here and go as far as we can.

“I think the club would be happy to get a big team home or away but we’ll just take it when the draw comes.”

Livi took a well-deserved lead in the 14th minute, though, when Scott Pittman’s drive from the edge of the area fell favourably for Glen and the former Hearts striker made no mistake firing high into the roof of the net from inside the box.

Terrific endeavour from Liam Buchanan to get to the byline was pivotal in Livi’s second 11 minutes later and from his cutback, there was partner White to lash the ball beyond Graeme Smith.

Marc McCallum had to be alert to block Leighton McIntosh’s fizzed effort as the hosts went in search of an 
immediate response, but it was the Lions who had the ball in the net again as an unmarked Declan Gallagher headed in a Kieran Gibbons free-kick only to see his celebrations cut short by the linesman on the far side who had raised his flag for offside.

Mark Burchill’s men were denied a stonewall penalty when White looked certain to capitalise on a long clearance from the Livi half and Ryan Strachan wrestled the striker to the ground inside the box, but referee Crawford Allan somehow spared the defender’s blushes by waving play on.

The hosts enjoyed some sustained pressure after the half-time interval but they were unable to properly test McCallum in the Livingston goal.

The West Lothian side then wrapped up their place in the next round when Buchanan nipped in ahead of Smith, and despite the goalkeeper getting a crucial touch, the ball fell kindly to White who made no mistake from the edge of the box for his second of the afternoon.

McCallum denied McAllister’s neat flick as the on-loan Dundee United player tipped over his crossbar before the striker netted a consolation from the penalty spot after substitute Myles Hippolyte’s clumsy challenge in stoppage time.

Peterhead: Smith, Blockley, Noble, Riley (Sutherland 60), Strachan, Dzierzawski, Ferry, Redman, McIntosh (Ferries 75), Brown (Rogers 75), McAllister. Subs: Jarvie, Stevenson, Adams.

Livingston: McCallum, Neill, Gordon, Gallagher, Longridge (Currie 83), Glen (Sheerin 83), Faria (Hippolyte 76), Gibbons, Pittman, White, Buchanan. Subs: Jamieson, Millen, Georgiev.