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Kelso defeat Melrose in 10-goal thriller

Kelso 6

Younger 3, Thomson 5, Abbott 15, 62, Younger 20, Fletcher 40

Melrose 4

Botterell 23, 46, 58, 85
  • Monday, 12 May 2014
  • Woodside Park, Kelso
  • Under 14´s
  • Cup
Ewan Connor

Ewan Connor | YFS South East Region Journalist
Author's Bio | Articles by Author | [email protected]

Melrose kicked off the game, kicking into a very strong blustery wind looking to avenge a previous 3-1 defeat to Kelso earlier in the season.

With just three minutes on the clock and with the first half chance of the game, Kelso's Craig Younger found himself in a shooting position at the edge of the box, following good pressing on the Melrose midfield. Younger calmly made the most of the opportunity by slotting past Melrose goalkeeper Kyle Cockburn, and into the bottom left corner.

It was a great start to the game, and a sign of things to come. Just two minutes later, Kelso managed to force a corner down the right side. Mikey Kavannagh took it, inswinging on his left foot and it was met with a powerful downward header from centre-back Andrew Thomson. 2-0 to the home team after five minutes, what a superb start!

With the conditions continuing to make things awkward for both teams, Kavvanagh took aim with the first of a succession of shots from long range, however Cockburn was able to gather the ball at the second attempt. A hard-fought midfield battle followed, before Kavvanagh again picked the ball up 25 yards out, where he played a great through ball for Josh Abbott to run through on goal, and place a right footed shot past the keeper and into the back of the net to make it 3-0 after 15 minutes.

Up until this point, Kelso's hard grafting had not allowed Melrose a sniff at goal before Callum Weston warmed the gloves of Jake Douglas in the home goal. A bit of hope for the travelling away contingent who'd made the trip over despite the freezing cold wind and an attractive looking Champions League tie on the TV.

What followed turned out to be the best move of the game. From the kick-off, Melrose conceded a free kick just inside the Kelso half. Thomson angled a superb diagonal ball into captain Sam Kyle, who had made a cute movement to provide himself with a bit of space on the outside right channel, and he fired in a dangerous low cross where Younger was lingering. The ball was slightly behind him but he managed to swivel and drive it past the retreating defenders on the line to make it 4-0.

This was followed by Melrose bearing down on the Kelso goal to try and reduce the deficit, however Douglas was equal to Callum Smith's deft chip. Harry Botterell did restore parity however with a neatly taken shot into the far corner of the net. This turned out to be the first of an impressive four goals for the talented Botterell.

Kavvanagh again had another crack from 30 yards for the home team where Cockburn made a comfortable save. Defender Thomas Billet then made an excellent tackle to deny Abbott again as he bore down on goal. Kelso were not to be denied though, as right back Ryan Fletcher showed great pace down the right hand side and dispatched his shot across the keeper and into the net. This was to make it 5-1.

Melrose immediately responded through Botterell again where he took an excellent touch from a long ball, made space for a shot and drove it low beyond Douglas. It was a thoroughly entertaining game and Melrose were making a real fist of it despite being three down after 15 minutes.

A strong run from Kelso's Morgan Thompson forced Cockburn into making an excellent reflex save. Another half chance came Kelso's way as Younger made an excellent run and dash in the left-wing position to deliver a teasing cross where Abbott could not quite reach it.

  • Half Time:
  • Kelso
  • 5-2
  • Melrose

Botterell started the second half as he ended the first, with another composed finish to complete his hat trick and make it a little edgy for the home team.

There was some tenacious midfield play from both sides followed, before Abbott latched onto a through ball and superbly dinked it over the onrushing Cockburn from a tight angle to make it 6-3.

The second half turned out to be a much tighter affair, with not much between the two teams. Melrose player Ethan Dalgleish featured more prominently in the game and looked a constant danger to the home defence but despite his best efforts they could not force another goal.

There was time however for Botterell to get another goal. This time it was a header from a corner which turned out to be the final kick of the game.

Kelso therefore move into the next round of the cup, as they look to go far in the competition. Melrose can count themselves unlucky and there are many positives to build on. 

  • Full Time:
  • Kelso
  • 6-4
  • Melrose


1. Jake Douglas
2. Ryan Fletcher
3. Jake Wright
4. Mark Scott
5. Andrew Thomson
6. Rhys Lawrence
7. Craig Younger
8. Sam Kyle
9. Josh Abbott
10. Mikey Kavannagh
11. Dwain Patterson
12. Ben Purcell
14. Morgan Thompson
15. Liam Moriarty
16. Robbie Findlay
1. Kyle Cockburn
3. Thomas Billet
5. Tom Church
6. Rory Dunlop
7. Ethan Dalgleish
8. Ryan Mann
9. Calum Smith
10. Michael Ferguson
14. Callum Weston
16. Joshua Taddei
18. Luke Todd
20. Connor Shepherd
21. Harry Botterell
25. Kerr Gullen
Star Player
Craig Younger - Mentions must also go to Mikey Kavannagh, Andrew Thomson and Josh Abbott but Younger gets the award because of his two goals, link up play and general all-round performance. He was a constant menace to the away team's defence with his pace and trickery.
Harry Botterell - Can count himself desperately unlucky to be on the losing side. It iss not very often you find someone netting four goals and still being on the losing team. He looked very composed in front of goal and has an excellent first touch as he displayed for two of his goals.
Magic Moment
The magic moment for Kelso was their goal to make it 4-0. It was an excellent all round move, which involved three players and some expert movement.
The final goal of the game to make it 6-4. A brilliant inswinging corner was met with a powerful header from that lad Botterell
  • Match report and photos copyright Youth Football Scotland.
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