GK1Jordan Pettigrew   
 RB2Craig Murray   
 LB3Luke Martin (U20)   
 CB4Arnault Bembo Yellow Card 
 CB5Richard Kirwan   
Off81CM6Jordan Pirrie   
 RWB7Stephen O'Neill Yellow Card 
Off87CM8Gavin Lachlan   
 CF9Fraser TeamScorer  
Off64CF10Daniel Fitzpatrick   
 LWB11Craig Henderson   
On87 12Sean Brown   
  13Ronan Fallens   
  14Ryan McTurk (U20)   
On64 15Gregor Johnston (U20)   
On81 16Matthew Dick (U20)   
  17Jack Curtis (U20)   

04/05/2019  |  League Cup

Cumbernauld Colts   1  v  2  East Stirlingshire

COLTS hope of retaining the Scottish Lowland League Cup were dashed at Broadwood on Saturday as rivals East Stirlingshire came from behind to claim their spot in the semi-final.

It was all looking very good for Colts after Fraser Team opening the scoring early on and the visitors were reduced to ten men when Scott Gray saw red.

But second half goals from Shire’s experienced duo of Andy Rodgers and Ross Allum ensured the Falkirk side would keep their season going for at least another week.

The hosts, who had a number of first team regulars missing, made the perfect start inside 2 minutes when Daniel Fitzpatrick found Team inside the box and the striker made no mistake slipping the ball clinically past Shire keeper Jamie Barclay.

Colts continued to take the game to their visitors and went close again in 20 minutes when Arnault Bembo got onto the end of Craig Murray’s cross but his close range effort was blocked by Barclay.

However, the game took a sour turn on the half hour mark when Gray kicked out at Stephen O’Neil after the Colts winger had fouled Gray, and the Shire defender was shown a straight red card.

The sending off seemed to spark the visitors into life and in 38 minutes talisman Rodgers played a delightful ball into Allum who held off Bembo before pulling the trigger but he blasted over the bar much to Colts relief.

But the Cumbernauld men finished the first period strongly and on the stroke of half time a great move involving Team and O’Neil stretched the Shire defence, and after O’Neil found Team in the box the striker should have scored but Barclay made a great close range stop.

The visitors started the second half brightly and in 49 minutes Rodgers had a great chance inside the 6 yard box but Colts keeper Jordan Pettigrew made a great block at close range.

Colts slowly began to take control of the game again and had good possession in the opposition half for prolonged periods, but they were unable to create any clear goal scoring chances.

However, as Colts dominated possession the visitors began to look more and more dangerous on the counter attack and the ten man appeared to grow stronger as the game entered the closing stages.

And the twist in the tale became a reality in 74 minutes as Shire levelled the game when Allum played an inch perfect cross field pass into the path of Rodgers who thumped a low volley past Pettigrew.

Then in 79 minutes the visitors turned the game on its head when Graeme McGregor robbed Gavin Lachlan in the middle of the park and slipped a pass through for Allum who placed the ball low past Pettigrew to score what proved to be the winner for Shire.

Colts threw caution to the wind in the final few minutes and in 89 minutes sub Gregor Johnston had a great chance to level the tie when he was found inside the 6 yard box, but he didn’t get enough power behind his effort to trouble Barclay.

And then with the last kick of the ball sub Sean Brown, who heads to pastures new with the Shire next season, sent an overhead effort towards goal which crashed off the top of the bar as Colts came agonisingly close to forcing extra time.

The final whistle meant the end of the season for Colts and Shire now progress to the semi-final where they travel to play Spartans.

East Stirlingshire; Barclay, Ashe, Gray, Grant, Greene, McGregor, Rodgers, Gallagher, Allum, McCafferty, Allison. Subs; McKee, Smith, White, Neave, Ure, McGauchie, Brisbane.

Stuart Coleman