Lochee United 3 Tayport 2

Two goals from Connor Birse and one for Danny Cavanagh were enough to see the Bluebells into the next round of the Signature Signs Cup at the expense of rivals Tayport.

The previous meeting of the two saw Lochee cruise to a comfortable win at The Canniepairt in November but this was a much tighter affair.

The visitors proved they were up for this one from the start and almost took the lead in the first minute. Garry Kenneth mis-controlled a through ball and Josh Chalmers was on to it in a flash, sending a fierce shot just over Jordan Millar’s bar.

The Fifers were not to be denied though and opened the scoring after only eight minutes. A headed clearance by Millar only went as far as a Tayport attacker who fired in a shot. Millar parried but the ball broke to Dayle ROBERTSON who drilled it low into the corner of the net.

The Thomson Park side were showing signs of their inactivity over the last few weeks and Tayport looked more likely to grab the next goal.

However, on 22 minutes the home side got back on level terms when Connor BIRSE rose highest to head in a Scott Webster cross at the back post.

Three minutes later, Lochee had turned the tie on its head with a second goal. Birse passed to Grant Lawson on the edge of the box and the midfielder played it through to Danny CAVANAGH whose clever dink over keeper Jake Shaw found the net.

Webster set up another couple of chances for Birse as Lochee gained a stranglehold on the game but there were no further goals at the break.

Within two minutes of the restart the Fifers had the ball in the net but Chalmers was ruled offside.

They then had three penalty claims within a few minutes. One was given as a free kick outside the box, one was ignored and the third was given for Kenneth climbing all over Tayport’s Jamie Mackie.

ROBERTSON took the kick and gave Millar no chance from the spot on 57 minutes.

Once again though, the lead was short-lived. Seven minutes later a great through ball from Ross McDonald was pounced on by BIRSE who flicked it past Shaw and high into the net.

Webster almost put the result beyond doubt with a searing shot from the angle of the box which crashed back off Shaw’s left hand post.

Ten minutes from the end Birse was denied his hat trick when the lineswoman’s flag went up for offside after he had been set up by Webster and Scott McComiskie.

McComiskie himself had a chance to score when put through but he poked his effort wide.

There was almost a last gasp equaliser for the visitors when Mackie found himself in space at the back post but Millar brought off a fine save to deny the Tayport man.

Lochee United: Millar, Webster, Kirk, Kenneth, McDonald, McNally, Cameron, Cavanagh (Davie 70), Lawson (Ritchie 80), McComiskie, Birse.

Tayport: Shaw, O’Brien, Sturrock, Conway, Suttie, Mackie, Payne (McPherson 73), Rollo, Robertson, Chalmers, Gill (Gray 83).

Written on 16 February 2019