Bute Youth under 16s team had a welcome interruption from league and league cup duty at the weekend, in the form of the Renfrewshire Cup, on a perfect pitch in front of a packed stadium, writes coach Roddie Leitch.
Having had some amazing results in the last month or so and having upped training in the last few weeks, the hardy squad of 13 boys were welcoming the arrival of Mossvale St James (Mojams) white, a team which had knocked us out the West of Scotland Cup in November by 8 goals to 1.
An early kick off suited both teams - with the Brandanes being at home it meant kick off was at 11.30am. The pitch was spot on and the weather looked as if it was going to hold.
Playing a very defensive formation of 4-1-4-1, it meant the boys were not really wanting to concede another 8 goals at home to a side who were placed 27 places and two divisions above us.
The game started badly for the local boys as attack after attack from the Mojams side peppered the home goal. Had it not been for some good stops from Ryan and some excellent last ditch defending from Scott and Lex, with Keeza being solid in the air and Duncan tracking back to cover, Mojams could have been two or three goals up in the first five minutes.
The breakthrough from Mojams came though on the ten-minute mark when a rare mistake from captain Lex allowed the left back to run through and slide the ball home against an onrushing keeper to make it 1-0 Mojams. This mistake only seemed to spur Lex on, as for the rest of the day he was as solid and reliable as we have seen this season and justified his armband.
Nico was having his game of the season in front of the back 4, and it was he who set up the equalizer, after some fine play from Taggy on the right, playing it infield to Nico who played a great ball to Matt who finished in style, 1-1.
As the home side were still celebrating, Mojams went up the park and scored a great goal to retake the lead three minutes later, when they really showed their A-league status. They moved the ball quickly and accurately for the big centre forward to beat Ryan at his near post and with five minutes left, it was 2-1 to Mojams.
Nico was then pushed up front for the final five minutes with Scott, to make it a 3-4-3 formation, and with only minutes remaining, route 1 football paid off again with a massive kick from Ryan which was flicked on by Kalum in the midfield. The added bodies up front seemed to confuse the Mojams defence who had only had one striker to worry about all day. The ball fell kindly to Matthew who smashed the ball home from close range to make it 2-2 at the full-time whistle.
Following penalties, BYFC won 4-3 and will move into the semi-finals of the Renfrewshire Cup which will be at home on May 18.
* For the full report, see this week’s Buteman - on sale on Thursday.