Spartans snatched a last-gasp winner to come from behind and defeat Tollcross Thistle 2-1 in this Premier Division 1 clash at Ainslie Park.
The victory has moved Spartans seven points clear of bottom side Edinburgh University while opponents Tollcross missed the opportunity to close the gap at the top on last year’s champions Sandys.
Spartans coach Andy Enwood was thrilled to have taken all three points.
“We had nine players missing including our goalkeeper due to injuries and players being away. We were a bit more direct as we weren’t able to play our normal game but I think we had the better chances in the second half.”
Tollcross went in at half-time with the advantage courtesy of Jason Bell’s wonder strike from 30 yards. However, Spartans pressed in the second half and got their rewards very late on as Tollcross failed to build on their lead.
Substitute Chris McIntyre’s strike four minutes from the end appeared to have salvaged a late draw for the hosts but, in the final minute, McIntyre arrived at the back post to steer the ball in from close range and turn one point into three.
Tollcross boss Alan McKay said: “The first half was as good as we have had all season. We got into dangerous areas but failed to increase our lead.
“The two goals we conceded at the end were really poor from our point of view.”
Meadows in the clover
Meadows United continued their impressive run of late with an emphatic 5-0 victory away to Standard Life in the third round of the Centenary Cup at Ainslie Park.
This all-Edinburgh East clash proved to be a one-sided affair with United overpowering their opponents and scoring some terrific goals in the process.
Roberto Delcampo latched on to a through ball and clinically finished from 18 yards to put United 1-0 up early on.
Iain Wallace then found himself in acres of space and he delivered a fine finish to double the visitors’ advantage.
James Thomson effectively sealed the tie before the break when he made it three as Standard Life struggled to create first-half opportunities.
After the interval, Delcampo converted a brilliant fourth, finding the top corner of the net with a perfectly controlled volley and Leon Otu-Nyian completed the rout when he tapped in from close range to make it 5-0.
Player/coach Grahame Dawes-Salazar underlined a consistent starting 11 as key to their recent success.
He said: “We pretty much dominated and played really well so it was a good performance from everyone.
“We have a solid back four and a reliable goalkeeper now so we are able to play our football.
“I think we can go far so hopefully we can at least make the quarter-finals.”
Alba keep up Logan run
Alba Athletic are through to the fourth round of the Logan Cup after a 3-1 victory over Tynecastle at Fernieside Sports Club.
With the score at 1-1 after 90 minutes, the match entered into an additional 30 minutes and Alba struck twice to seal victory.
Michael Brown put Alba ahead when he finished from close range after some great build-up play by Craig Nisbet. However, Tynecastle equalised when Joss Froude struck to send the tie into extra-time.
The visitors went ahead in the first half of extra-time when Barrie McNamara’s diving header bulleted into the back of the net from a corner before Brown added his second when he finished off a flowing move involving Stuart Affleck.
Tynecastle’s misery was compounded late on when both Gary Morrison and Jason Watson were sent off.
Alba’s Craig Nisbet was pleased to come through a tricky tie. He said: “I thought we played really well. We pressed and harried them and got there in the end. There will be a lot of good teams to beat but we’ll look to go as far as we can.”
Tynecastle’s Andy Gibson said: “There wasn’t a great deal between the sides but we didn’t capitalise on the chances we had in the second half.”