Robbie Horn disbelief as Bonnyrigg Rose pay penalty for missed chances against Livingston youngsters

Bonnyrigg Rose boss Robbie Horn was left scratching his head at how his side didn’t progress to the second round of the SPFL Trust Trophy as Livingston B went through after a 3-1 win on penalties at New Dundas Park after a goalless 90 minutes.

Rose have made an impressive start to life in League Two with six points from their first two matches but their winning run was halted by the young Lions. Rose will look to bounce back when they visit Stranraer on league business this Saturday.“You’ve got to give the opposition credit, they defended for their lives,” said Horn. “I think we had 27 shots at goal and we didn’t score. It was poor finishing and a bit of luck. I don’t think they had a shot at goal during the 90 minutes.“I’m disappointed. We made a lot of changes to try and freshen it up and give everybody a game, not with the thought of taking it lightly because at the end of the day we wanted to win and get through to the next round. It’s done now, we need forget about it and move on.

“We’ve done pretty well [with out start to the season] to be honest, and been very professional with how we’ve went about it. We’ve taken our chances when they’ve come along and I know what we are capable of.”

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The young Lions, containing several under-18 players plus overage first team players Ivan Konovalov and Scott Bitsindu, faced a barrage of heavy pressure from the League Two leaders in the early stages.

Bonnyrigg Rose striker Kieran McGachie heads over the bar in one of many chances not taken by the home team. Picture: Joe Gilhooley LRPS

Rose had the chance to take the lead from the penalty spot after 22 minutes when Dean Brett surged into box and was brought down by Scott Bitsindu trip. The right back stepped up himself but was denied by a strong Konovalov save down to his right.

Youngster Zak Khan, making his competitive debut for Rose from left wing back following his promotion from the club’s under 20s side in the summer, then brought out a save from Konovalov with his shot across goal.

Rose stepped it up a gear in the second half, and despite being camped in Livi’s half they couldn’t force a way past Konovalov, who was the visitors’ hero in the shootout as he saved three penalties.

Khan’s performance and Lee Currie’s first start after returning from a hernia operation were the plus points on the night for Horn, who added: “He’s not played a lot of football but he’s a talent and he was probably one of the bright sparks on the night for us. He’s stepped up from the 20s, done really well in pre-season and the games he’s come on, so he deserved a wee opportunity.

Bonnyrigg Rose are denied again by impressive Livingston goalkeeper Ivan Konovalov. Picture: Joe Gilhooley LRPS

“Lee’s been out for a period of time, so it was good to get him back, he needed that 90 minutes.”