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Astonishing four-minute Scottish Cup turnaround for Glenrothes Athletic

Riverside CSC 4

Bonar 16' 24' McKindley 59' 75'

Glenrothes Athletic 5

Aird 2' 66' Nicoll 65' Smith 69' 73'
  • Sunday, 27 September 2015
  • Riverside Park
  • Under 15´s
  • Scottish Youth FA Cup

Alasdair Hooper | YFS Dundee Senior Reporter
Author's Bio | Articles by Author | [email protected]

Dundee’s Riverside Park witnessed Scottish Cup drama as Riverside CSC and Glenrothes Athletic met in the second round. What panned out was a truly amazing game that saw the Fife side emerge as 5-4 winners following an astounding second half turnaround. 

Glenrothes Athletic had originally taken an early lead through captain Fraser Aird’s second minute goal. However, it was Riverside who then began to take control of the game and the home side went into the half time break 2-1 ahead after Nairn Bonar scored two stunning goals. Riverside extended their lead through Mark McKindley but then the talking point of the game arrived soon afterwards. In just four minutes Glenrothes came from behind to take the lead courtesy of a Dylan Nicoll penalty, an equaliser from Aird and a strike from John Smith. With Riverside gambling to try and get an instant equaliser Smith then made the score 5-3 in the 73rd minute. A further twist came as McKindley netted a second for himself to bring Riverside within one, but they couldn’t find another goal as Glenrothes held on to progress to the next round of the competition.   

It didn’t take long for this cup-tie to spring into life as Glenrothes netted in just the second minute. Nicoll managed to get his head onto the end of a corner kick and flicked it up into the air. There to meet the ball, as it fell from the sky, was Aird. The Glenrothes captain managed to the turn the ball into the net, from a few yards out, to give his side the perfect start.

Glenrothes continued to attack in the early stages of the half, trying to extend their lead further. After a couple of close chances, one denied by the woodwork, Riverside then started to work their way back into the game.

In the 16th minute the equaliser came after Glenrothes gave away a free kick on the edge of the box. Up stepped Bonar who curled the ball beautifully over the wall and straight into the top left hand corner. Joe Russell, in goal for Glenrothes Athletic, was left with no chance.  

Getting back on level terms seemed to galvanize the home side as they then took control of the game. They launched attack after attack, most of which were going through Bonar out on the right wing. It was this avenue that gave Riverside the lead as the clock ticked into the 24th minute. Bonar, positioned out wide, launched the ball straight over Russell and into the net. Considering he was so close to the corner flag it caught everyone by surprise. What a way to take the lead.

Riverside continued to search for further goals but the half time whistle soon came. It was time for Glenrothes Athletic to reorganize themselves and fight back.

  • Half Time:
  • Riverside CSC
  • 2-1
  • Glenrothes Athletic

The away side had renewed impetus for the opening stages of the second half as they searched for a way to grab an equaliser. Despite their positive play, however, Riverside extended their lead in the 59th minute after hitting them on the break. Bonar was the one who had the initial shot at goal, which was superbly saved by Russell. The ‘keeper managed to turn the shot onto the post in a magnificent display of agility. However, luck was not on Glenrothes’ side as Riverside’s McKindley soon arrived to slot home the rebound.

Six minutes afterwards the momentum swung. Glenrothes Athletic were awarded a penalty following a foul on Smith. Nicoll stepped up to take the kick and expertly converted into the bottom right hand corner.

Almost in the blink of an eye it became 3-3. Glenrothes went straight on the attack following the successful penalty managed to get the ball straight into the box. After a right scramble inside the box, with each side blocking each other’s attempts to either score or clear, the ball eventually fell to the feet of Aird. He worked a little bit of space before firing a shot at goal. The ball took a nick off of a defender on its way, taking it beyond the reach of the goalie, and nestled in the back of the net.

The turnaround was complete three minutes after. Following some great build up play on the left wing the ball was laid off to Smith inside the box. The diminutive number 10 took one touch to set himself before firing in a fantastic goal. The score was now 4-3 and the away team was in the ascendancy.

The boys in orange weren’t done there though. In the 73rd minute they scored their fifth goal as Smith’s workaholic tendencies paid off. Chasing down a long ball he managed to evade the defence’s gaze and find himself one on one with the goalkeeper. He showed great composure once again to slot the ball through the ‘keeper’s legs and into the net to complete one of the most astonishing periods of football I have seen.    

Two minute later Riverside grabbed a goal back to rekindle hope that they could progress. McKIndley managed to fire in a strike from the edge of the box to bring the home side back to just a one goal deficit. However, with just five minutes remaining time was against them as they searched for an equaliser.

Despite their efforts the full time whistle did indeed come before they could find another goal. Whilst understandably gutted Riverside can be proud of a lot of their play in this game, particularly in attack. For Glenrothes it’s onto the next round. While those amazing few minutes will be the talking point they also displayed a lot great stuff throughout, particularly with regards to the passing game they were looking to play. For the rest of us it’s time to breath. You won’t see too many games like that this year.

  • Full Time:
  • Riverside CSC
  • 4-5
  • Glenrothes Athletic


Riverside CSC
Glenrothes Athletic
1. Ian Wylie
2. Thomas McPhail
3. Zander Chaplin
4. Andrew Smith
5. Christopher Young
6. Craig McDonald
7. Drew Wighton
8. Jody Adams
9. Nairn Bonar
10. Gregor Folan
11. Jamie Timmons
12. Mark Higgins
13. Mark McKindley
14. Adam Fairweather
15. Gary Scott
17. Elliot Tosh
1. Joe Russell
2. Marc Baker
3. Shaun Kelly
4. Brandon Waterson
5. Josh Davies
7. Jamie Greenshields
8. Logan Morrison
9. Innes Robertson
10. John Smith
11. Connor Aird
12. Ryan Chrystal
15. Dylan Nicoll
18. Joe Hogg
Star Player
Riverside CSC
Glenrothes Athletic
Nairn Bonar – Real skill out wide in this game and a lot of the home side’s attacking play went through him. Scored two stunning goals that I wouldn’t even be able to recreate on FIFA.
John Smith – Three words. Never stopped running. From a defender’s point of view playing against a forward like that must be horrible. Topped off his work with his team’s fourth and fifth goal.
Magic Moment
Riverside CSC
Glenrothes Athletic
Bonar’s second goal – It’s not often a sumptuous free kick is usurped in this category but the goal that saw Riverside take a 2-1 lead was simply amazing. The angle, the distance, everything about this suggests it should not be a goal scoring opportunity. And yet, somehow, it was.
Smith’s first goal – The goal that completed the astounding turnaround. It was also a sublime team move.
  • Match report and photos copyright Youth Football Scotland.
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