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Saturday 6 January

Musselburgh Athletic 3-1(1-1) Whitburn Juniors

Musselburgh : Tufail, McManus, Lynch, Donaldson, Moffat, Cherrie, Whyte(Thomson 68), Murphy(Ralton 83), King(Gray 80), Macdonald, Davie, Subs: Myles, McGurk
Whitburn: Allan, Wilson, J Hamilton, G Hamilton, Greig, Chisholm, Tomaszewski, McQueenie, J Thomson, A Thomson, Taylor, Subs: Graham, Lejman

A depleted Whitburn team took to the turf of Olive Bank to play the top team in the division and, in the end, put up a plucky performance that came up short. The early going was dominated by the home side and they took the lead within the 10th minute. On the quarter hour a Connor McQueenie near post corner was headed on by Dewi Taylor and deflected just wide by a home defender. A minute later the same combination worked but this time Taylor’s header went over. Jordan Thomson had the next effort after a good lay off from Andy Thomson but he chose a first time volley and missed the target. With 25 minutes gone following a cross from the right Mathu King fired over from close in. 15 minutes later Whitburn’s good pressure paid off when a Darren Tomaszewski cross was headed in by J Thomson for a well deserved equaliser. Musselburgh then had two good efforts on goal, the first a header from Stephen Macdonald deflected just wide and then one from the Bradley Donaldson who headed over. In injury time A Thomson was fouled by Michael Moffat who lashed out at him whilst on the ground and received a red card.

Whitburn came out for the second half with added confidence and within the first 10 minutes had had three good chances. The first two were long range shots from the two Thomsons but both went just over. Then came a shot from Taylor which was deflected over for a corner and from this he got touch at the near post which the keeper held on to under pressure. On the hour King drove in on goal but totally mishit his shot which went well wide. Midway through the half a penalty was awarded to Musselburgh that looked neither a foul nor inside the box. It was taken by King and saved by Allan but Macdonald reacted quickest and found the net with the rebound. As the players returned for the centre the referee clearly heard a dissenting comment which he attributed to McQueenie who was then red carded having already received a yellow in the first half. It was felt that this was a case of mistaken identity and that another player had made the comment. With 14 minutes to go from a deep free John McManus headed just wide. Up the other end a Musselburgh player was shown a yellow then a red, again presumably for dissent to give Whitburn another man advantage. Yet it was the home side that clinched the 3 points with a crazy goal which trundled over the line after a back post header bounced off two Whitburn defenders with Allan left stranded. Whitburn tried hard to get back into the game after this but were unable to trouble the home keeper and Musselburgh held out for the three points.

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