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Final Fit For A King

Tranent 1-2 Bonnyrigg Rose

King Cup Final

Prestonfield, Linlithgow

Tranent came from behind to win the King Cup in extra time at Prestonfield.

Double chasing Rose had taken the lead immediate after half-time through a Kerr Young header.

But Dean Whitson equalised for Tranent to take the final into extra-time before Bradley Barrett’s 94th minute winner to take the cup back to Forester Park.

Rose started off at cracking pace, Robbie Horne’s side looking to add the King Cup to the EOSFL Championship already in their trophy cabinet. They were enjoying plenty of possession in the opening minutes of the game, but although they created a few chances, they never really troubled Sinclair Inglis is the Tranent goal. Tranent on the other hand were having to settle for trying to hit on the break, and despite the lack of possession, they looked looked dangerous going forward and actually created the better chances.

Cup finals can sometimes be cagey affairs, but not this one, with both sides look ping to attack at every opportunity. The tackling was a bit tasty too, neither side holding back and although it never looked like boiling over, there was plenty to keep referee Jordan Curran on his toes.

The fist-half continued in pretty much the same pattern: Rose controlling the possession but unable to to trouble Inglis too much, while Tranent were dangerous on the counter attack, Bradley Barrett in particular breaking at pace and keeping the Rose defence on the back foot. The final ball just seemed to escape Tranent though and while Swanson and Currie both went close for Rose, the best chance of the half came just a couple of minutes before the break, Dean Brett rattling the frame of the goal with the keeper beat.

Rose were just as quick out of the blocks in the second half and had the lead within 3 minutes of the re-start. Currie’s corner wasn’t great but Tranent only half cleared and when the ball was played back to the corner flag, Currie’s second bit of the cherry was inch perfect for Young to head home the opener.

It seemed like the goal had knocked the stuffing out of Tranent and for a spell they looked like a beaten side. The defence were suddenly all over the shop, dwelling too long on the ball and giving it away in dangerous areas. The nervousness filtered through to the keeper and he too nearly gifted Rose an opening. But Rose couldn’t capitalise and Tranent gradually began to find their way back into the game. With fifteen minutes left in the watch, Whitson jumped highest in a crowded box and headed Big T level.

The rest of the 90 minutes flew by, both sides looking for the goal that would win it, but it never came and for the second year in succession the final went to extra time. When the extra period kicked off, it was Tranent’s turn for the quick start, Barrett cutting in from the left and calmly slipping the ball under Brian Young to give Big T the lead.

Rose have shown time and again this season that they’re a side who just don’t know when they’re beaten, and almost got themselves straight back in it, substitute Adam Nelson heading past Inglis but the flag was already up and it didn’t stand.

With the clock ticking away, there then followed the most bizarre 20 minute spell. First Tranent were awarded a penalty when Barrett was chopped down in the box. Nelson‘s spot kick wasn’t great and Young blocked it comfortably, but as the ball bounced around in the box, Jamie Devlin challenged the keeper and was shown a red card for a barge.

The man advantage didn’t last long however, Rose substitute Ewan Moyes shown a straight red just two minutes later for a pointless lunge in the middle of the park. Half-time brought a moment of sanity, but it didn’t last long, when Barrett was chopped down in the box again. Another penalty to Tranent and although Sub Mark McGovern did the honours this time, Young saved once again.

Rose threw everything at Tranent in the final minutes, but they held on somehow to win the King Cup for the first time and round off a strong season for their first EOSFL campaign.

Man of the Match: Bradley Barrett
Man of the Match: Bradley Barrett

Man of the Match: There were plenty of candidates on both sides, but Bradley Barrett was the one who stood out, scoring the winner and drawing the foul for both penalties. His pace and direct running constantly had the Rose defence on the back foot and he always looked capable of making something happen.

See all the match photos HERE.

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