Saturday, November 26 gave Bute Youth Football Coaching’s U16 boys a break from league football when Celtic BC came calling in the local boys’ second ever cup game.
The stadium was full with a few folk guessing at nearly 200 people up watching, and the boys didn’t embarrass themselves.
The game started brightly for the Celtic boys who enjoyed a lot of early possession but with no real cutting edge and the back 4 of Kyle Menzies, Jonah Templeton, captain Ciaran Woods and Ryan Craig defending well. Keeper Jordan Leitch only had to make one good stop early on.
Celtic changed formation early and doubled up on Kyle Menzies at the back which paid dividends straight away when a long ball crossed in was only half cleared by Liam Graham.
It fell to Celtic’s winger whose shot deflected off a lunging Ryan Craig and slid passed BYFC keeper Jordan Leitch.
Celtic doubled their lead 12 minutes later after some fine play from Niven Shaw and Scotty Harvey broke down and allowed Celtic to attack at pace and make no mistake from 12 yards, 2-0 Celtic.
It was all one-way traffic now and it was against the run of play when Niven Shaw was unlucky to pull his shot wide after some neat trickery on the edge of the box. Ryan Driver was next to take on the Celtic midfield when CJ McMillan found Ryan wide on the right.
He ran down the wing, nutmegging two players and rounding a third only to lose his footing at the vital moment. It was, however, another great run from Ryan who is slowly starting to find his form.
Celtic effectively tied the game up on 34 minutes when another fine team goal ended in a nice finish from just inside the box.
A long ball from the Celtic right-back caught the local boys sleeping and Jordan came thundering out of his goals and flattened the striker. To his credit the Celtic player dusted himself down and never made too much of it. The penalty was awarded and Jordan found himself lucky to escape the referee’s book.
The local keeper then pulled off a great penalty save, diving low to his left, turning the ball away.
Half-time 3-0 Celtic.
A half-time talk and the penalty save seemed to spur the boys on and they came out the blocks like a freight train.
Four minutes in the ball was played from the back up the wing and deflected off the left back for a throw. A quick throw in from Ryan Driver found Niven in the box who turned his man and was felled, resulting in a penalty.
Niven made no mistake and scored his 17th of the season to reduce the deficit to 3-1.
BYFC piled the pressure on for the next 15 minutes with both Andrew McErlean and Myles Allan playing well going forward more and more.
John Rippie was brought on along with James Nicol and both played well. Celtic killed off any hope of a local fight back with a fine solo goal late on to make it 4-1 final score.
Referee Brian McNelis gave the BYFC man of the match to keeper Jordan Leitch, with special mentions to Niven, Ryan Craig and captain Ciaran Woods.
Everyone put in a shift, though, and all players can walk away with their heads held high.
As always the game was sponsored by Delta Foods and special thanks must go to Tommy and Wendy at the Golfers Bar for the post match hospitality, Bute Island Radio for all the promotion for the match, and a big thanks to Celtic BC players, coaches and parents who were fantastic on the day. Well done to all involved.