Amateurs: Fernieside beat SAndys to win Stead & Simpson Cup

The Fernieside squad and mascot line up before the match at Ainslie Park
The Fernieside squad and mascot line up before the match at Ainslie Park
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Fernieside triumphed in the final of The Stead & Simpson Cup Final with a 5-4 penalty shootout victory over Premier League Champions Sandys at Ainslie Park.

The match was a closely contested affair as Sandys looked to add the trophy alongside the LEAFA Premier Division title, whilst Fernieside were aiming to wrap up their season with some silverware having finished in ninth place in the Premier Division.

James Reilly threatened early on for Sandys with a shot that whistled over the bar, whilst Fernieside had an opportunity on 25 minutes through a Darren Bell strike that was held by Sandys keeper Chris Barclay.

Sandys took the lead ten minutes before the interval when Reilly scored from inside the 15-yard box following a neat one two. But Fernieside responded quickly and they equalised on 41 minutes through Christopher Gordon who rifled a shot into the roof of the net.

The rain continued to pour down in the second half but it did not dampen the spirits of both sides as they continued to press. Peter Jeans went close for Fernieside with an effort that was blocked by the legs of Barclay, with chances for John Hall whose snap shot went inches over the bar, and Lee Charlton unluckily saw his strike go inches past the post after he had skipped a few challenges.

Sandys, however, always remained sharp in the final third and they doubled their advantage on 69 minutes once again thanks to Reilly, who finished well from a tight angle.

Sandys’ Liam McCardle had a shot that was cleared off the line by Josh Carter whilst Nick Windley had a deflected half volley that Barclay had to get down quick to claim.

But the match was then forced to go to spot kicks as Fernieside levelled with just six minutes to go when Hall wriggled clear of his marker to send the ball across the face of goal and it was touched in at the back post by Gordon for his second goal of the afternoon.

Sandys could have won the game in injury time with Steven Philip going agonisingly close with his effort, but when the match was decided by penalties, Sandys missed their fifth and decisive spot kick which allowed Fernieside the opportunity to claim the trophy which they duly did.

In the other fixture of the weekend, Salvesen lost out 
to Linlithgow Thistle in the semi-final of The Centenary Cup after a 4-3 defeat in West Lothian.

The Lothian West League Champions were looking to make it a quadruple of trophies for the season but it wasn’t to be despite goals from Michael Yuill, Kyle Hay and David Ross.

Linlithgow ensured they will be facing Clermiston Star at Paties Road tomorrow (7.00pm kick-off) with Billy Baurus netting a double along with strikes from Derek Oliver and Chris Parrot.

Tollcross Thistle, meanwhile, will face Tranent Amateurs in the final of The Logan Cup this Friday at Ainslie Park (7.45 pm kick-off) after a midweek 5-1 victory over Linlithgow.

Two goals from Ciaran Duffy along with strikes from Stefan Hay, Jason Bell and Chris Reid ensured Alan McKay’s side of another final as the LEAFA season draws to a close.