Saturday 12th December 2020 – Scottish Cup Second Preliminary Round
Blackburn United 1 Civil Service Strollers 1 (AET, CSS won 4-2 pens)
Redfern 44 Moffat 53
A piece of history was made at the Purdie Worldwide Community Stadium as it hosted the first ever Scottish Cup tie in Blackburn, with the winners moving into the First Round draw to be played on Boxing Day. Last seasons debut in the competition away to Hill of Beath resulted in captain Michael Browne being sent off, meaning he was unavailable for todays game.
The first chance of the match came on ten minutes when from a throw in, Dominico Gibson ran onto the ball but John Drummond blocked his effort in the act of shooting and the ball went out for a fruitless corner. The same player again tried his luck a few minutes later but dragged his shot wide. On twenty minutes Blackburn carved out their first chance when Richie Hutton directed a throw-in on the right to Danny Campbell inside the box, his effort from a tight angle was held by Lewis Budinauckas the young on-loan Rangers keeper.
Just past the half hour, Marley Redfern sent in a cross towards the near post looking for Laurie Devine, however the covering defender just got his head to it to send it out for a corner. Jordan Hopkinson then tried his luck at the other end but flashed his shot wide.
With time running out in the first half, a moment of brilliance lit-up the game. Marley Redfern collected the ball inside his own half on the left, before going on a run past several defenders before cutting inside and unleashing an unstoppable shot past Budinauckas into the roof of the net. A moment of brilliance from the on-loan Hamilton Accies youngster to send Blackburn in at the break.
Strollers made a change at half time looking to get back into the game and with eight minutes gone they done just that. A free-kick on the left into the near post was met by Jonathan Moffat to bullet a header past King into the bottom corner of the net to draw the sides level.
After that bright start from the visitors the game became cagey, with neither side wanting to lose what could provide to be a decisive second goal. On 69 minutes Connor Young flashed a shot wide, then a few minutes later Laurie Devine went down in the Strollers box but was shown the yellow card instead of a penalty by referee MacDonald.
With ten minutes remaining it was Young again who had an effort for the visitors, this time well saved by King, then Marley Redfern slid a ball into Laurie Devine whose curling shot crept past the far post.
The game moved into extra-time, with few incidents of note. A Connor Young effort drifted past and then strong penalty claims from Blackburn were waved away after Jordan Devine appeared to be bundled over in the box. With time running out a Jordan Devine header from a Redfern cross went over the bar.
The game therefore needed to be settled on the lottery of penalty kicks, Martin Lawrie converted the first, but Brian Ross sent his effort over the bar and then David Howe’s effort was saved. Despite Laurie Devine converting his kick it was left to Dominico Gibson to covert Strollers fourth penalty to win the tie and progress to the first round.
Blackburn United: Gavin King, Richard Hutton, Martin Lawrie, John Drummond, James Mildren ©, Stuart MacLeod (Jordan Devine 101), Danny Campbell (David Howe 85), Marc Smith (Dominic Kane 68), Laurie Devine, Brian Ross, Marley Redfern. Unused subs: Matthew Kinross, Justin Watson, Paddy Queen, Craig Saunders.
Civil Service Strollers: Lewis Budinauckas, Kyle Fee, Euan Bauld, Jonathan Moffat (Ross Guthrie 104), Matthew Cunningham (David Churchill 104), Mark McConnell, Alieu Faye, Jordan Hopkinson (Connor Young 62), Matthew Shaw (Andrew Johnston 46), Craig Newall, Dominico Gibson. Unused subs: Ross Young, Lewis Duffy, Fraser Napier.
Saturday 28th November 2020 – East of Scotland Premier League
Blackburn United 1 Dundonald Bluebell 2
L.Devine 50 Strang 36, Dall 90+4
It was a fairly uneventful opening period to the match with both teams sizing each other up without creating much of note. Just past the quarter hour mark the first real chance was created, a free kick by Aiden Hendry was met by Barry Sibanda who headed back across goal where Stuart Cargill had time to gather and turn but his shot was clawed away by Gavin King, and Marty Lawrie cleared the loose ball before Sibanda could get on the end of it.
It took until the half hour for the next chance when Callum Strang swung in a free-kick from the right and Sibanda slashed high and wide from only 8 yards. However on 36 minutes the opening goal came when from a throw-in deep on the right hand side, it was flicked on and Strang got his head to it and flicked it on again, this time into the far corner of the net.
Blackburn had created little of note but that changed early in the second half when Laurie Devine set Brian Ross clear down the right wing, James Lennox came racing out of his goal but Ross dinked it past him and crossed from the bye line into the middle for Devine to head into the unguarded net for the equaliser.
On 59 minutes, a long throw out by King found Ross who sent a through ball which Danny Campbell tried to race onto. Lennox got to the ball just before Campbell but a collision was inevitable, and a stramash involving most players ensued. After Campbell had received treatment he was booked for his part in the challenge but Lennox was lucky only to see yellow for retaliation in the aftermath.
Then with twenty minutes remaining Lewis McKenzie went in late on Marley Redfern with his studs showing and referee Colin Whyte flashed the red card, reducing Bluebell to ten men.
Blackburn looked to take advantage and a few minutes later Macleod sent a long ball upto Ross who was racing clear but Scott Durie managed to make up the ground and put in a goal saving tackle. Devine then flashed a header wide from a Mildren cross as the home side pushed for a second.
With 10 minutes left Ross swung in a cross, Devine got his head to it but Lennox managed to tip the effort over the bar almost from point blank range. Then Ross himself had an effort that flew over.
With time running out Derek Wallace headed wide from a corner in a rare second half chance for the visitors before into injury time Marty Lawrie was sent packing for a second yellow after a challenge on Sibanda. As play continued and into the fourth minute of injury time, a long ball from the back found Kieran Dall in the clear on the right and his angled drive across King crept in at the far post to win it for the visitors.
Blackburn United: Gavin King, James Mildren, Marty Lawrie, John Drummond, Michael Browne, Stuart MacLeod, Laurie Devine, Justin Watson, Brian Ross, Danny Campbell (Kieran Swanson 92), Marley Redfern (Richie Hutton 77). Unused subs: David Howe, Jordan Devine, Marc Smith, Paddy Queen, Craig Saunders.
Dundonald Bluebell: James Lennox, Scott Durie, Aiden Hendry, Colin Wilson, Lewis McKenzie, Barry Sibanda, Stuart Cargill, Ross Mutch (Kieran Dall 46), Derek Wallace, Chris Gay, Callum Strang (Craig Wedderburn 75). Unused subs: Darren Gribbin, Jason McLaren.
Referee: Colin Whye Assistants: George King, James Taylor
Saturday 14th November 2020 – East of Scotland Premier League
Blackburn United 2 Linlithgow Rose 3
Swanson 21, Devine 82 Boubekri 31, Cairns 52, Brownlie 58
The game burst into life on the 11 minute mark when Marley Redfern ran at the Linlithgow defence and slid the ball through to Kieran Swanson who was hauled down on the edge of the area with referee Chris McNab only flashing a yellow towards the visiting defender. At the other end Ruari Maclennan had a shot tipped round the post by Gavin King and from the resulting corner a Ewan Moyes header was cleared off the line by Martin Lawrie.
On the 20 minute mark Blackburn nearly took the lead when from a short throw-in, James Mildren helped the ball into the box and it fell to Redfern who’s shot hit the post and bounced to safety. However the opener was only delayed by a minute when it was Redfern again who carried the ball forward and shuttled it out wide to Swanson who fed Laurie Devine hugging the right touchline, he crossed the ball back into Swanson who fired home from close range.
On 27 minutes Richie Hutton almost doubled the lead when he cut inside on the left and angled a shot which Brian Shwake got down well to gather.
Just past half hour mark Finlay Anderson was penalised out on the right touchline for what looked like a hard but fair tackle, and remarkably was booked for his troubles. The subsequent free-kick was taken short and lofted into to the far post where Lawrie looked to be impeded but the ball was headed back across goal for Kieran Boubekri to stab home from close range.
Willis Hare tried from distance but King got down well to gather, then on the stroke of halt time it was Maclennan again causing problems on the right and his drive from the edge of the area was brilliantly tipped round the post by King to keep the scores level.
Six minutes into the second half and Swanson has a pop at goal from distance but Shwake gathered, however a minute later at the other end Linlithgow took the league when Lewis Crawford and Sean Slaven combined well on the right and when Crawford fired in a cross, Michael Browne was adjudged to have handled, perhaps harshly. Dean Cairns converted the kick.
Six minutes after the second, Linlithgow added a third when MacLennan crossed to the far post where David Brownlie met it to score from close range. Blackburn were hanging on a bit at this stage and with 20 minutes left Scott Stevenson hit the bar.
Into the last ten minutes and Blackburn got a goal back when Laurie Devine raced into the box but was bundled over by Ewan Moyes who was also shown the red card. Devine took the penalty which was blocked by Shwake but the ball came back to Devine to fire home.
Blackburn pushed for the equaliser against the 10 men but Linlithgow managed to see the game out.
Blackburn United: Gavin King, James Mildren, Martin Lawrie, Finlay Anderson, Michael Browne (Alan Higgins 54), Marc Smith (Paddy Queen 80), Kieran Swanson (Craig Young 80), Stuart MacLeod, Laurie Devine, Marley Redfern. Richie Hutton (Kai Wilson 65). Unused sub; Ryan Kidd
Linlithgow Rose: Brian Shwake, Scott Stevenson, David Brownlie, Ruari MacLennan, Willis Hare, Dean Cairns, Kieran Boubekri (Brodie Strang 76) (Khedive McIntosh 84), Ewan Moyes, Lewis Crawford, Daryl Meikle, Sean Slaven. Unused subs; Myles Hogarth, Jay Sandison, Kenneth Barr.
Referee: Chris McNab Assistants: Lee Pirie, Andrew Brown.
Wednesday 11th November 2020 – East of Scotland Premier League
Blackburn United 0 Crossgates Primrose 1
Campbell 18 (p)
The first real chance of the game didn’t come until the 13 minute mark when a looping attempt from Marley Redfern crept over the bar. However the opening goal came five minutes later when a cross into the box was cleared and fell to Archie Campbell just on the edge of the area who fired the ball through a ruck of players and the referee pointed to the spot for a questionable hand ball. Campbell himself took the kick and sent Gavin King the wrong way.
It was a half of few clear-cut chances. On the half hour mark Danny Campbell collected from a throw-in and tried his luck from 25 yards out but the ball flew over. The minutes later Ciaren Chalmers tried at the other end with the same result.
It was more of the same as the second half got underway and it took until the 68th minute for Redfern to drift past two Crossgates defenders on the right and he slipped the ball to Marc Smith but he shot weakly at Craig Burt. Then a minute later Archie Campbell tried from the edge of the area but shot over.
Things got harder for Blackburn with 72 minutes on the clock when John Drummond saw a straight red after a rash challenge.
The game began to peter out, Danny Campbell’s angled effort with 7 minutes remaining was saved by Burt, and then a shot from Reece Sawyers was punched away by King at the other end, who then pulled off a good stop from Archie Campbell. One final chance for an equaliser came with two minutes remaining when Jordan Devine appeared to go down under a challenge inside the area as he attempted to get onto the end of a cross but the referee waved away his protests. Devine then saw red after the final whistle for taking his protests a little too far for the referee Daniel Grave’s liking.
Blackburn United: Gavin King, James Mildren, Martin Lawrie, Michael Browne, John Drummond, Marc Smith, Justin Watson (Richie Hutton 61), David Howe (Stuart MacLeod 78), Laurie Devine (Jordan Devine 67), Danny Campbell, Marley Redfern. Unused subs: Kieran Swanson, Alan Higgins, Ryan Kidd.
Crossgates Primrose: Craig Burt, Douglas Swan, Reece Sawyers, Stewart McDonald, Scott Lawrie (Lewis Payne 73), Archie Campbell, Darren Aitken (Mark Forbes 81), Ciaren Chalmers, Cameron Lumsden, Garry Leighton, Regan Lumsden (Lewis Sawyers 63). Unused subs: Robbie Gilmour, Graeme Nutt.
Referee: Daniel Graves Assistants: William McAleese, Tayler Martin.
Saturday 24th October 2020 – East of Scotland Premier League
Blackburn United 2 Musselburgh Athletic 4
Campbell 1, McLeod 54 Whyte 13, Ballantyne 23, 71, Miles 82
Straight from kick-off Blackburn pushed forward and Danny Campbell, making his first competitive appearance of the season, got on the end of a David Howe flick on inside the box and half-volleyed the ball past Paul Grant to open the scoring with barely 60 seconds on the clock.
It took the visitors a little while to get settled, but once they did their tricky forward line began causing problems. Dean Ballantyne wriggled free on the left but dragged his shot wide when well placed to score. However the equaliser came on 13 minutes when Mathu King slid in Bradley Whyte whose weak first time effort seemed to deceive Saunders and the ball hit the back of the net. Ballantyne then headed over as Musselburgh applied pressure and it was the same player who nabbed the second when he got on the end of a cross into the box to sidefoot the ball past Saunders to make it two.
On the half hour mark Blackburn carved out only their second real chance of the game when Campbell again got into a good position before shooting over. Just before half-time, Ballantyne again was causing problems on the right. he got on the end of a long back and squared to Mathu King, but his close range shot cannoned off the junction of bar and post, rebounded back to hit him and bounce behind for a goal kick.
Richie Hutton came on at half time for the injured Marley Redfern and it was the home side who took early control of the half. Five minutes after the restart good work by McLeod saw Campbell curl a shot across Grant only to see it rebound off the far post and cleared to safety. A minute later McLeod got on the end of a long clearance by his shot was straight at Grant who gratefully gathered.
However the equaliser wasn’t long in coming when Howe won possession in the middle of the park, the ball found its way out wide to Mildren on the right, his first time cross into the box saw McLeod rushing into the box to stab the ball home. Still Blackburn pushed forward and minutes later Justin Watson and Campbell combined and it was Watson who let loose an angled drive which Grant blocked away with his feet.
Musselburgh began to get themselves back into the game and their third came via an avoidable error. Drummond headed a through ball back towards Saunders who stretched to stop the bouncing ball going out for a corner, however he only succeeded in palming the ball to an unmarked Whyte who rolled to ball to Ballantyne who had the simple task of ramming the ball into the net.
With less than ten minutes remaining Blackburn carved out a chance to equalise when David Howe and Dominic Kane combined on the left, Kane swung in a cross but Mildrens glancing header slid agonisingly wide of Grant’s far post. However a minute later Musselburgh sealed the game when Ballantyne broke clear on the right of the box and rolled it to Jackie Miles to shoot across Saunders.
Blackburn United: Craig Saunders, James Mildren, John Drummond (Kieran Swanson 86), Martin Lawrie, Michael Browne, Domini Kane, Justin Watson (Kyle McClung 86), David Howe, Danny Campbell (Jordan Devine 86), Stuart McLeod (Laurie Devine 74), Marley Redfern (Richard Hutton 45). Unused subs: Finlay Anderson, Gavin King.
Musselburgh Athletic: Paul Grant, Jordan Orru (Lewis White 66), John McManus, Declan O’Kane, Josh Jeffries (Ethan Wynne 87), Conor Thomson (Callum Donaldson 87), Mathu King, Bradley Whyte, Bradley Donaldson, Dean Ballantyne (Kyle Somers 87), Liam Gregory (Jackie Myles 75). Unused subs: Liam Reid, Ryan McGurk.
Referee: George Calder Assistants: Cameron Doyle, Ken Boyd.
Tuesday 13th October 2020 – East of Scotland Premier League
Blackburn United 1 Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale 4
McLeod 27 Cummings 48, Cunningham 66, Browne OG 74, Wringe 83
Our first ever competitive match with out visitors from the west side of Edinburgh, and with four changes to the starting XI, it started off at a frantic pace with the ball moving quickly from end to end. The first real chance arrived after eight minutes when Stuart McLeod slung in a corner which Michael Browne met but his header was deflected wide for another corner which came to nothing. It was McLeod again shortly afterwards who combined well with Kriss Goss before the latter let off a shot which was comfortably gathered by Dean Beveridge in the Thistle goal.
Thistle showed for the first time on the 11 minute mark when an effort by Liam Kelly was gathered by Craig Saunders. Sean Cumming then tested Saunders from inside the box but his effort was turned away well by the keeper before an offside flag was raised.
Play was still raging from end to end and the opening goal eventually arrived on 27 minutes when a poor clearance by Beveridge was pounced on by Goss who took the ball wide around the keeper and it looked as though the change was lost, but he kept his composure under increasing pressure from defenders and played the ball across goal for McLeod to stab home at the far post.
On the 34 minute mark, Blackburn almost went two ahead when Goss fired in a free kick around the wall which rattled off the crossbar and behind for a goal kick. A minute later Swanson and Goss combined only for Swanson to drag his shot wide. McLeod then have another opportunity on the left to increase the lead but shot into the side netting. The final real chance of the half saw a ball over the top of the defence fall to Dylan Moore but he pulled his shot wide from a tight angle.
The second half begun and it was the visitors who grabbed hold of the game right from the start. A cross into the Blackburn area fell to Michael Deland and his shot was brilliantly clawed away by Saunders and cleared. However moments later Sean Wringe found space on the right, crossed into Sean Cumming who couldn’t miss from close range.
Thistle were dominating possession and it came as no surprise they took the lead on 66 minutes when Alex Cunningham evaded several tackles through the middle of defence and slotted the ball past Saunders. Blackburn’s first real chance of the half came on 70 minutes when a McLeod cross was met by Goss but his header was held by Beveridge.
The killer third came on 74 minutes when an angled shot across Saunders deflected off Browne and into the net. A fourth was added on 83 minutes when a long clearance from Beveridge found Wringe who held off Watson and headed the bouncing ball over the advancing Saunders and into the net. There was time for Laurie Devine to have a final effort by Beveridge held his shot.
Another game that started well and could have seen a greater lead at half time, but which completely fell apart in the second period.
Blackburn Utd: Craig Saunders, Justin Watson, Reece Boyle (Laurie Devine 70), Michael Browne, James Mildren, Dominic Kane, Kieran Swanson, Stuart McLeod, Kriss Goss, David Howe, Richard Hutton (Alexander 80) Unused subs: McLung, J.Devine, Gavin King.
LTHV: Dean Beveridge, Dylan Moore (Scott Donald 76), Michael Deland, Sean Lally, Alex Cunningham, Sean Cumming (Louis Signorini 76), Darren Smith, Sean Wringe, Liam Kelly (David Ross 65), Niall Doherty, Thomas Penker (Iain Laver 45). Unused subs: Paul Craford, Neil Smeaton, Jamie Henderson.
Saturday 10th October 2020 – East of Scotland Premier League
Blackburn United 0 Jeanfield Swifts 6
McLeish 32, 52, 53p Dodd 23, 31
A sunny day greeted the delayed start to the new season, which sadly (or perhaps luckily) was played behind closed doors due to continuing Government restrictions.
Blackburn started on the front foot and pinned the visitors back and Darren Dalrymple sliced a good opportunity past in only the second minute, a minute later Marley Redfern cut in from the right before shooting over from the edge of the area. On 17 minutes the opener should have came for the home side, a run down the right wing by Kieran Swanson saw him swing in a cross that found Jason Watson, returning on loan from Livingston, unmarked at the back post but he volleyed over with the net gaping.
The first real threat from Jeanfield came five minutes later when Saunders dealt comfortably with a shot from Connor McLaren, but as so often happens the visitors took the lead a minute later against the run of play when a long ball out of defence found Chris Dodd in the clear and he finished well past Saunders. Blackburn forced a number of corners which came to nothing before the game turned on its head.
On the half hour mark a quickly taken free-kick saw No.11 shoot over from the edge of the area but the second came soon after. Dodd took a corner short to Chris McLeish, who then played it back to Dodd who had outwitted McLeod and he curled a shot into the far corner of Saunders net from a tight angle. No more than a minute later McLeish got on the end of a cross into the box and glanced a header past Saunders to make it three and the momentum has swung.
At half time Ritchie Hutton replaced to struggling Dalrymple but it made little difference as seven minutes after the restart and audacious lob from sub Paul Simpson from distance rattled off the bar and bounced out to McLeish who had the easiest task of rolling the ball into the empty net and any thought of a comeback had gone. A minute later saw a rash challenge inside the box and McLeish completed his hattrick from the spot.
The scoring was completed on 77 minutes when Mark Smith was unmarked from a corner to head home. There was even time for Blackburn to miss a penalty awarded for handball with seven minutes later, but Mark Mitchell got down well to turn away David Taylors spot kick.
A game that started so promisingly had turned alarmingly into a heavy home defeat against a slick Swifts outfit who will be a force this season. Tuesday’s game against Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale can’t come quick enough.
Blackburn Utd: Craig Saunders, Kieran Swanson (Lewis Alexander 63), Reece Boyle, John Drummond, Michael Browne, Stuart McLeod (David Taylor 69), Marley Redfern (Jordan Devine 63), Dominic Kane, Laurie Devine (David Howe 63), Justin Watson, Darren Dalrymple (Richard Hutton 46). Unused subs: James Mildren, Gavin King.
Jeanfield Swifts: Mark Mitchell, Jamie Reid, Aaron Whitehead, Jake Dolzanski, Connor McLaren (Paul Simpson 46), Fraser Smith, Chris McLeish (Mark Smith 58), Gary Fergus (Jamie MacKenzie 57), Chris Dodd (Regan McLaren 58), Chris Scott, Scott Smith (Kieran Stewart 74). Unused subs: Fraser Cumming.