Celtic’s Young Guns defeated Cowdenbeith tonight in a superb second half display after being 1-0 down at the break. It was inspired and determined and showed there’s more to these kids and their game than pretty football.
This team has got some real dig too.
Don’t get me wrong, the football was there and it was pretty damned good! But against a big physical team who most people agree are playing below their level, Tommy McIntyre’s team showed they could compete, and more. That they could win.
The first half was uneventful, with our young guns struggling to get up to the pace of the game, but from the start of the second half it was clear we meant business. Jack Aitchison got the equaliser, with a lovely move and a run across the box, ending with a beautifully placed shot. We took a 2-1 lead through Crossan after some lovely footwork from Calvin Miller.
Chris Turner, of Cowdenbeith, was sent off for making an obscene gesture to the ref whilst he was coming off the pitch for a substitution … then, in a bizarre moment of funk the referee decided to send the sub from the field, as he was already on the park. I’ll tell you, it was a weird moment but technically correct; the red card incident happened whilst Turner was still on the field. The ref’s decision to send him off reduced his team to ten men.
Let me tell you who was impressive tonight; PJ Crossan, the kid we signed from Dunfermline. He scored in the last round too, and here he came on as a half-time sub for Aidan Nesbitt, and he grabbed a goal and terrorised the home side throughout.
Cowdenbeith were physically intimidating here. Their players weren’t shy about going in hard; a slew of bookings towards the end of the game were a sign of their frustration as the young Hoops came forward and testing them at will.
In the last two minutes, for example, young Aitchison got away from his man, but the linesman judged he’d strayed offside. That didn’t stop the Cowdenbeith defender trying to get the young kid’s top off in a ridiculous tussle.
Calvin Miller was voted man of the match for his display; this boy has got a lot of class. He is going to be a real cracker. Ajer also impressed hugely; his attitude is great. A lot of kids might complain about being zig-zagged between the first team squad and the youths; he knuckles down.
We’ve got a promising bunch here, and the chance of winning this tournament is still on.
In Brendan We Trust.
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