There was a goalscoring league debut for Sean Muhsin as Edinburgh City ran out 3-0 winners over Gretna 2008 in their Ferrari Packaging Lowland League curtain-raiser at Meadowbank.
Muhsin, pictured, opened the scoring in the first half and then Shaun Harrison and Dougie Gair, from the penalty spot, ensured a comprehensive opening day win for the champions.
Mushin, a summer arrival from Spartans, was delighted to open his account and revealed he is settling in well to his new surroundings.
“It’s a great three points,” he said. “I was happy to break the duck and it’s actually the first goal we’ve scored when I’ve been on the pitch since I’ve signed! We started excellent then faded off, but it became almost too easy for us going forward and we got really slack which allowed them more possession.
“It’s been good since I signed. It’s a boisterous bunch – a lot of colloquial language in use so I’ve had to adjust to that! I came in with my Spartans bag on my first day and that was missing within five minutes! They seem like a happy bunch so I’m happy to be here.”
A scrappy opening quarter of an hour produced little in the way of chances. Ross Guthrie’s turn and snap shot on the angle of the area was held by Vinnie Parker which was the first time that either goalkeeper was tested.
Mushin took his chance on 25 minutes, striding forward to send a dipping shot in from distance which wrong-footed Parker and skidded into the net.
Iain Anderson should have at least tested City’s trialist goalkeeper Gregor Amos moments later, but the Gretna striker blazed his effort high and wide after seizing on a loose ball in the City defensive area. Anderson was proving to be Gretna’s biggest threat, and he managed to force Amos into action ten minutes before the break, the former Falkirk and Lothian Thistle keeper getting down well to parry the No. 9’s low strike. Amos produced an even more impressive stop shortly after, flinging himself to his right to tip Brandon Longcake’s glancing header around his post.
City made it 2-0 four minutes after the restart. A clever short corner between Guthrie and Oretga Deniran resulted in Shaun Harrison bulleting a header home via the crossbar, leaving Parker helpless.
Gretna, again through Anderson, should have halved the deficit soon after, but the striker somehow sent his free header wide of goal after Dean Smith’s free-kick caught the City backline sleeping.
The Raydale Park side came even closer on 58 minutes when Dean Douglas was very unfortunate to see his left-foot dipping volley bounce off the bar. They then hit the woodwork again, Douglas once more seeing his volley stay out, this time off the underside of the bar after connecting with trialist Sam Atkinson’s corner.
City were handed the chance to seal the points from the penalty spot with 17 minutes remaining after Guthrie was barged in the back inside the area. City captain Dougie Gair gladly accepted, stroking the ball in low to Parker’s left.
City boss Gary Jardine was pleased his team overcame any opening day jitters. “I’m pleased with the score,” he said. “To win 3-0 at this level, there won’t be many games like that.
“Our performance wasn’t great but it’s always like that at the start of the season – everybody’s edgy and scared to get off to a poor start but I’m pleased all round.”
Edinburgh City: Amos, McConnell, Donaldson, Harrison, Mbu, Muhsin, Guthrie (Wishart 75), Gair, Deniran (Osborne 54 (Narayaninsamy 67), Allum, MacDonald.
Gretna 2008: Parker, Atkinson, Douglas, Casey, Rea, Crozier, Longcake, Addison, Anderson (Milligan 70), McMath (Graham 78), Smith.