Broughty Athletic were controversially knocked out of the East of Scotland Cup after going down 3-2 against hosts Broxburn Athletic at Albyn Park today.

The Fed were dealt a blow when Brian Clark broke down injured in the warm-up and was replaced by Stewart McConnachie in the starting line-up. Ryan Suttie was back in central defence as Barry Myles was out.

Things started brightly for the home side, forcing three corners in the opening minutes of the game but nothing came from them. 9mins on the clock and Broughty’s Danny Cavanagh tried his luck but his effort flew over the crossbar and out. 14mins and Broxburn had a great chance only for Fed keeper Iain Ross to pull off a fine diving save at his left post. From the corner, Broughty broke upfield with Paul McLellan racing away, he fed the ball to McConnachie but his weak effort was saved.

28mins and Broughty piled on the pressure, forcing two corners but Jamie Winter headed over the bar on both occasions. Then the deadlock was finally broken and it was a 22yrd shot that flew past Ross into the net for the home side to take the lead, 1-0. 35mins Ross saved again from a Broxburn corner and found Grant Lawson who ran the length of the pitch only to see his shot saved by the home keeper. A minute later Winter tried a 25yrd effort but it sailed over the bar. Frankie Lannen saw his header over the bar from a McLellan corner on 38mins.

41mins on the clock and Broughty were denied a stonewall penalty. McLellan crossed low from the right side and found Winter on the edge of the box running goalwards, just as he connected with the ball to shoot goalwards he was blatantly pushed from behind despite his effort being palmed out past the post by the keeper. Screams for a penalty by the Fed players were waved away by the match official.

But on 43mins the Fed deservedly equalised courtesy of a Stewart McConnachie 25yrd screamer into the back of the net after the ball fell to him when Shaka Roy’s shot was blocked on the edge of the box, 1-1. Then seconds before the halftime whistle the home side stood wondering how they never went in at the break ahead as Ross pulled off another fantastic save at his left post from close range, H/T 1-1.

Ryan Blair was first to try his luck on 48mins, turning his marker inside and shooting into the side netting. 57mins Broughty’s Ross was called into action again, this time finger-tipping a fierce strike over the bar. A run of five corners followed for the home side but were dealt with by the Fed defence. On the hour mark, Lawson thought he’d put the visitors ahead but his 20yrd curling effort rattled the crossbar and out.

Then on 62mins controversy struck in the Broughty box. Broughty’s Suttie raced to block a close-range shot with the help of Blair, the referee was 5yrds away, Suttie went in with both hand/arms high up, the ball struck Suttie’s shin as he dived in, and the ball spun away but the assistant referee flagged and called the referee over (see pic above and below). After a minute of talking, Broxburn were awarded a penalty for handball against Suttie despite no real appeals from the home players to the utmost disgust of the Fed players and officials. The penalty was duly put away past Ross to make it 2-1.

66mins and Roy thought he’d levelled for the Fed when his cross come shot was dropped by the keeper but he managed to save it on the line despite several appeals that the ball crossed the line. 73mins and Ross once again saved the Fed, this time a 20yrd effort was tipped away and out for a corner. Then on 76mins, the Fed levelled the tie. Captain Jamie Winter collecting the ball and ran into the box and shot low into the corner from 14yrds out, 2-2.

Then the winning goal came on 82mins, a superb shot from the edge of the box flying past Ross in the goal giving him no chance, 3-2. Broughty had one final effort on 88mins, substitute Ross McCord seeing his edge of the box shot saved, it fell to Jay Smart, he tried his luck but the ball was cleared to safety. F/T 3-2.

Summing up, a great game of football from both teams, well worth the entrance money for those attending. Some cracking goals, cracking saves, shocking decisions from the referee made it an entertaining cup tie.

Man of the Match for the Fed, some decent displays throughout the side, Shaka Roy and Stewart McConnachie upfront, Jamie McCunnie in the heart of the defence, but once again it goes to Fed keeper Iain Ross for pulling off five first class saves to keep Broughty in the game.

Fulltime: Broxburn Athletic 3-2 BAJFC Scorers: McConnachie, Winter