Amateurs: Tollcross Thistle dressed to nines

Tollcross Thistle
Tollcross Thistle
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Tollcross Thistle coach Alan McKay praised his side’s performance after they cruised past Blackridge Vale Of Craig with a 9-0 scoreline in the second round of the East Of Scotland Cup.

“I’m happy with the team. We did everything we wanted to do and more. High ball retention, great shape on and off the ball, and plenty of chances created,” the 29-year-old said.

Tollcross have twice exited the EOS Cup at the semi-final stage in recent years and McKay has admitted it’s a trophy they “really want to win”.

The hosts got off to a solid start and didn’t take long to go ahead. Gary White crossed in to Adam Perry, who headed in with ease. Goals from Jack Norman and a Kyle Hay effort put Tollcross firmly in the driving seat before a sublime, dipping free-kick from the former extended their lead to 4-0 by half time.

The home side were moving the ball about with ease in the second half and a lovely team move was finished off by Martin McCann who tapped it in from six yards for his side’s fifth of the afternoon. Goals six and seven happened shortly after thanks to a quick brace from Sean Mossman before McCann grabbed a poacher’s effort from close range.

With minutes left Nick Perry rounded off the scoring when he smashed the ball in at the near post.

Elsewhere, Edinburgh United ALBA grabbed their fifth win of the league campaign after beating East Calder 3-0 away from home.

Craig Nisbet almost gave the visitors the lead 15 minutes in but he couldn’t divert Les Hallet’s cross on target.

After a first half stalemate, both sides looked to be more adventurous going forward after the break and it was Edinburgh who upped the ante. Sam Campbell did well down the right-hand side before curling a ball into Alan Seddon. His presence was enough to cause one of the East Calder defenders to deflect the ball in for an own goal.

Mark Law doubled his side’s lead five minutes later after he caught the East Calder defence napping to rob the ball and fire in from close range.

Then, before the end, a penalty was awarded for Edinburgh after Campbell was brought down in the area. Law sent the goalie the wrong way to wrap up the points for the visitors.

Meanwhile, Balerno Athletic edged out Craigroyston CYFC 3-1 on penalties when their East Of Scotland second round tie finished 2-2 after extra time.

In what was a frenetic encounter, the hosts Craigroyston made the first blow when a free-kick into the box was glanced in at the back post by the head of Ryan Robertson.

After getting themselves back into the tie, Balerno were able to grab a timely equaliser just before the interval. Sam Saddler’s shot from the edge of the box took a big deflection to deceive the goalie and find the net.

The visitors maintained their momentum after the interval and went 2-1 ahead five minutes into the second half. To his side’s amazement, James Higgins’ corner curled into the box that evaded everyone and found the net.

With the game heading towards 90 minutes, Craigroyston dug deep and pulled the tie back in the balance with a late goal. Ian Wilson crossed the ball into Douglas McGregor who was able to turn and score at the far post.

After neither side could find a winner in extra time, the match was to be settled on penalties and it was the visitors who held their nerve to win 3-1 after Craigroyston missed the target on numerous occasions.