Battling Cumbernauld unable to keep Linlithgow at bay in Scottish Junior Cup

Action from Linlithgow's win over Cumbernauld
Action from Linlithgow's win over Cumbernauld

Cumbernauld United went out of the Scottish Cup as they went down 5-0 to East Region giants Linlithgow Rose on Saturday.

But despite the eventually heavy margin of defeat John Queen’s side gave a good account of themselves against one of the top sides in the junior game.

For the opening 30 minutes of this third round tie Cumbernauld, playing some excellent possession football, looked the better side and kept the home supporters quiet.

When the locals scored a rather scrappy first goal, however, and two further counters just prior to the interval, the match changed completely and, in the end, the East Region Super League side finished good winners.

Prestonfield Park was in immaculate condition for this game and a large crowd on a cold winter’s day looked forward to an exciting contest.

The game got off to a flying start when, from a Linlithgow free kick, United keeper Barry Fraser had to make a good save from a Tommy Coyne header - time three minutes.

Two minutes later, from another free kick, the Cumbernauld ’keeper was in action again to foil the eager home forwards.

The visitors settled and began to play their trademark excellent football.

A Ross Foley shot was saved by the Rose goalkeeper. Then a Dale Clark cross saw a Dom O’Halloran header come close.

In the 18th minute a Davie Dickson left foot rocket looked netbound only to be blocked by a Linlithgow defender.

United continued to impress. Davie Dickson, Dylan McGuigan and Mikey McLaughlin were working hard in the midfield but the visitors lacked the finishing touch and were made to pay in the 29th minute when Rose opened their account with a really scrappy goal.

A corner kick, resulting from a great save from Barry Fraser, caused a stramash in the United goalmouth and, after all sorts of attempts at scoring, Rose central defender Colin Leiper scrambled the ball into the net.

United’s heads did not go down, however, and they still made tracks towards the Linlithgow goal but failed to really test Ally Adams, the home goalkeeper.

In the 38th minute however, the visitors suffered at the hands, or feet, of Scottish Junior internationalist Coyne.

After good play on the right the Rose star man sent a great shot past the Cumbernauld keeper.

Minutes later Rose got goal number three when United’s Alan Clark, attempting to clear, only managed to divert the ball over his ’keeper’s head and into the net.

The Cumbernauld boys came out in the second half in determined fashion but a second Coyne goal, a right foot shot which got a slight deflection, was a sickener. Coyne was a thorn in the United flesh throughout the game, a real class act.

In the 59th minute the homesters were on the mark again when striker Colin Strickland shot past an unguarded Fraser to complete the scoring.

Although the young United team were well beaten in the end, they did not give up and the scoreline did not tell the complete story of the game.

It’s back to league business on Saturday when United are away to Blantyre Vics, kick off 1.45pm. The supporters’ bus for Blantyre will leave Guy’s Meadow at noon and the town centre at 12.05pm.