Meggetland, East of Scotland Qualifying Cup, 21/09/21
Entrance – £7
Attendance – 195 (Rough head count) and a rabbit
Pie – Coffee and Irn Bru £2.20 (no room for a pie)
Pint – Tennents £4.35, The Kilted Pig(across the road)
Tynecastle Football Club
Founded – 1928 as Tynecastle Boys Club (2005 Tollcross were merged into the club to form Tynecastle FC)
Nicknames – None
Honours – East of Scotland Football League First Division – 2008/09 and 2019/20. Alex Jack Cup – 2017/18
Random Fact – The club were originally formed as a “Mecanno Club” to build models. Football among other activities were soon introduced as the number of members increased.
I have always liked the look of Meggetland and this was my chance to see it. It doesn’t disappoint. It is a great set up that’s for sure. With the curved roof main stand , shallow terrace and social club(fellow tenants Burghmuir Rugby Club) end which is made up of terracing and a patio/outdoor bar area it gives you so many different vantage points to watch the game. The pitch is in great condition too. I am not huge on modern stadia but I am a big fan of this place. I am sure the other facilities in the complex such as hockey, cricket and 3G pitches are top notch too.
Unfortunately, the game didn’t live up to the ground. I would go as far as saying it was the poorest game of my season to date. This being because it was no spectacle. Bonnyrigg ruled the roost from the first minute and the game continued this way until the referee blew for full time.
The night stated well with good food and a pint in the pre-recommended boozer, The Kilted Pig, with me trying to devour what looked like a bloody whale and felt like one once it was gone too. Then I got a laugh when waiting in the queue to get through the turnstile when I overheard an old lady say to her pal that the lack of parking was caused by “some sort of football nonsense”. Wow imagine football being played at a multisport complex, what next films at a cinema?
As I said the game is not much to write about. I took my position on the social club terrace side which gave me an excellent elevated vantage point. From here I was faced with Bonnyrigg attacking at me. The opening minutes didn’t bear much fruit in terms of chances but it was a game played mostly in the Rose’s favour. The first big chance fell to big striker Hunter ten yards out but he was thwarted by some last ditch defending. Hunter was then stopped by the legs of the home keeper shortly after. The Rose continued to push and got the chance to take the lead from the spot. Handball was the call and it was highly protested by the home players and bench but to me it was a stone waller. Yes it was extremely unfortunate in the way the ball spun up and struck the arm or the defender but it was an arm that was up unnaturally and Hunter would most likely have been on the ball and clean through. My aforementioned vantage point gave me the best view in the house and I would have given it. Currie stepped up and sent the keeper the wrong way. This got the Rose going and they should have made it two when Evans chose too much power and smashed the ball over the bar. The woodwork was then struck when a move between Hunter, Barrett and Evans saw the latters effort beat the keeper but hit the base of the post and role across the line into the safety of the relieved keepers arms. A second did come when Evans thundered an effort from twenty five yards past the keeper at the near post, was the slight nick on the way through enough to beat beat the keeper? The ball definitely moved en route.
HT 0 v 2
Hunter should have got in on the goal scoring action in the first minute of the the second half after his quick feet beat his man but the effort struck the post. Evans grabbed his double via the woodwork and the keepers hands when his header somehow made it over the line. Bonnyrigg looked to mean business in the second period. Hunter again should have scored but his effort was just the wrong side of the bar. Captain Currie was unfortunate and deserved a second when he beat a couple of men by turning them inside out and chipped an effort that was cleared off the line. It was a great piece of fitba by the player I though was the best player on the pitch. The Tynecastle goal was finally breached again in the sixty seventh minute when Evans grabbed his third of the night and the easiest of the three as he was left with a tap in from close range. The four was quickly turned into five when Barrett nodded home a corner from Currie. I thought this was hurtling towards an even bigger score line given how relentless and totally dominant the visitors were. However, their finishing let them down with Evans, Turner, Evans again being the worst offenders. On another day this could have been a massacre for managerless Tynecastle, but it was five and Bonnyrigg Rose head through to the next round.
Not the greatest game I have been to this season but glad I took the time to take on Meggetland and Tynecastle. Worth the three hundred mile round trip. Hopefully the Rose are more clinical in just under a fortnight when I will see them again, this time on home turf.