Saturday October 12, 2019
Tunnocks Caramel Wafer Cup Round 4
Kane Hester 88
Shane Sutherland 90+1 pen
Airdrie crashed out of the Tunnocks Caramel Wafer Cup as Elgin City shocked the Diamonds with two late goals at the Penny Cars Stadium.
Ally Roy, Dean Hawkshaw and Dale Carrick replaced Josh Kerr, Nat Wedderburn, Calum Gallagher from the starting line up at Peterhead.
Just as it looked as though a penalty shoot-out was about to follow the final whistle, two goals in the closing minutes of the tie took Elgin City to their first win against the Diamonds and through to the quarter-finals of the competition.
While Airdrie had enjoyed the bulk of possession in the match, they were unable to penetrate a well marshalled Elgin defence, with keeper Thomas McHale ensuring his side would earn a clean sheet.
The first 45 minutes saw the visitors defend in depth and maintain their defensive shape for the majority of the half.
Airdrie’s build-up on occasion lacked the intensity to cut through the opposition ranks, with most crosses into the box either headed clear or comfortably taken by McHale.
However, with 12 minutes gone, after moving the ball quickly between Dean Hawkshaw and Callum Smith, a well-struck Carrick shot needed blocking before landing nicely for McHale.
Roy’s excellent run on 18 minutes led to him going close to an opener but bringing out a decent save from McHale.
A first-time volley from Hawkshaw after a headed clearance from Adam Eckersley’s 31st minute free kick was unfortunately straight down the middle where McHale was able to collect as he stood.
The big keeper showed good positioning to collect the ball again seven minutes later when Smith chested the ball back to Kurtis Roberts, whose 20-yard effort was on target.
Almost on the break Elgin could have snatched the lead when a cross from the left struck Calum Fordyce and went past David Hutton’s right post.
After the interval the home side controlled the play but rarely provided any real threat to the Elgin goal. Anything that Airdrie could throw at the visitors they were able to manage it throughout, and when called upon keeper McHale was there to make the save.
Five minutes into the second half Eckersley and Roy combined with latter sending his close-range attempt off target.
Both sides sent shots from distance off target with Kyle MacDonald and Elgin’s Kane Hester not troubling either keeper.
MacDonald sent an angled shot over McHale’s goal with 19 minutes to play, while changes were being to try and impact on the match.
On his 100th Airdrie appearance, captain Sean Crighton flicked the ball back into play from the goal-line on 74 minutes, though Hawkshaw’s shot was another to be blocked as bodies were being thrown in front of the ball.
With only minutes left Smith was clear and into the box as Airdrie passed the ball from the left but Stephen Bronsky showed alertness to get back and block the shot.
On 88 minutes Shane Sutherland clipped the ball in behind the Airdrie backline and there was Kane Hester to poke the ball beyond the advancing Hutton into the net and provide the lead for Elgin.
They sealed their place in the last eight when Sutherland fired home from the spot after Fordyce had fouled substitute substitute Rabin Omar inside the box. Sutherland lashed the ball beyond Hutton giving the keeper no chance.
Hawkshaw went close to a consolation goal in stoppage time, but it wasn’t to be as the visitors made it four away wins in a row to make the last eight.
John O'Brien at the Penny Cars Stadium.
Match photography by John Steven. Click images to view full size.