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Burnhead Colts emerged victorious from a fiercely contested Scottish Cup Quarter Final contest with fellow Lanarkshire FDA side Jerviston FC thanks to a fantastic winning goal from Captain Darren Park mid way through the second half. The game was played in ever worsening winter conditions but the sides produced an enthralling contest to help keep the large crowd gathered at Ashgill Park warm. The grass pitch was also in fantastic condition, allowing each side to pass the ball in an effort to break the other down.
Jerviston kicked off with a real cup tie atmosphere developing in the cold air. The presence of assistant referees complete with SFA standard flags indicated the importance of the occasion. Jerviston left winger Brandon Brennan made his presence felt in the early stages with a number of driving runs down the left. His teammates looked to find him at any opportunity and whilst he was able to drive his side on his efforts were well matched by the Burnhead defence, Steven Kyle particularly prominent in that respect.
Jerviston’s Robbie Houston was also showing some neat touches and worked his way into a shooting position in the eighteenth minute; unfortunately for Houston though the effort lacked power and was easily gathered by Scott McLuggage in the Burnhead goal. Jerviston were perhaps shading possession and territory at this stage, Jack Scott also volleying wide but Burnhead responded with a chance of their own. A lovely weighted pass from Robbie Bryden released Jack Adam on the left side of the box; Adam was unable to connect with the ball fully and it landed in the hands of the grateful Jack Burnett. Burnhead forced a couple of free kicks and corners but were unable to create a chance of note, with Leighton leading Jerviston well at the back.
Burnhead’s Greg Torrance had another left footed effort that was easily saved as the home side seemed ever more likely to make the breakthrough before half time. However Brennan gave a timely reminder of his danger just before the half time whistle, breaking away at pace past a couple of defenders. Sadly for Brennan though he was unable to work his way into a shooting position so the score at half time was nil nil. The two teams were very evenly matched and the talk on the sidelines was that this game could go to extra time and penalties.
Half Time: Burnhead Colts 0-0 Jerviston FC
The second half started in a similar vein to the first with defences on top. As the sleet turned to snow chances were limited. Torrance hit an effort from some distance out that went just over for Burnhead and Jerviston’s Tom Leighton shot straight at the keeper. Eighteen minutes into the second half however the deadlock was broken. Brennan conceded a free kick some distance from goal. Captain Park grabbed the ball and a sense of anticipation grew amongst the Burnhead support; it was easy to see why as Park hit a fantastic, dipping effort that flew into the net. A wonderful strike from the midfielder, the importance of which was not lost in the ensuing celebrations.
Jerviston looked stunned and just seconds later could have found themselves two nil down. Ben Fitzpatrick broke through the middle and hit a lofted shot over Burnett. The ball smacked off the post and the rebound was shot over. Jerviston had survived and now needed to regroup and look for an equaliser. Brennan always looked the most likely to provide one, his low free kick was almost touched in by the onrushing Leighton who just failed to get enough on it.
The chance Jerviston had been waiting for came with about five minutes to go. After a series of close calls in the Burnhead box the ball broke to Euan Scott about six yards out. Scott connected well with the ball but too well to some extent as the ball went over the bar. Burnhead survived and Park forced a save as they looked to finish the game off. Jamie Halliday was denied by the offside flag before the final whistle finally went.
Great scenes of joy amongst the Burnhead squad and supporters was contrasted by the disappointment clearly felt by Jerviston. Both sides had contributed to an intriguing tie but Burnhead emerged victorious and now had a semi final to look forward to.
Full Time: Burnhead Colts 1-0 Jerviston FC