If you’re the superstitious kind that’s always looking for signs ahead of football games as a guide to how the next match might go, then you might be encouraged by this tale before our William Hill Scottish Cup second round replay against Annan Athletic at Ochilview.
In 2010/11 season Shire were given a second round away tie at Highland League Forres Mechanics. That game, like Saturday’s at Galabank, ended 0-0 with the replay scheduled for Ochilview the following Saturday.
The first game at Mosset Park had been a difficult one for Shire and the team were by no means certain to progress even though they now had home advantage.
The first half hour was very even with both teams creating decent opportunities. Then Shire striker Kevin Cawley turned things the home side’s way.
Five minutes before the break and, having withstood a Forres fightback, Craig Donaldson’s pace took him on a run down the right wing.
Kevin Cawley finished again to make the interval score 2-0. Surely Shire could rest easy after that ? Well, maybe, but they certainly would have liked to put even more daylight between themselves and their Highland League opponents.
There were just three minutes gone in the second half when Scott Johnston decided to take the ball for a run.
3-0 and a hat-trick for Cawley. That pretty much wrapped up Shire’s spot in the third round of the Scottish Cup although Forres made sure life was a difficult as possible for Shire. The score didn’t move again. Then a rash challenge by the visiting keeper on Johnstone.
After Forres changed their keeper following the red card, the ten men had to face a Shire free-kick just outside the box. To make matters worse for them David Dunn shaped up to take it.
So 4-0 it finished and Shire were through to the third round of the Scottish Cup and away match at Spartans.
Needless to say this weekend when Shire welcome Annan Athletic to Ochilview in our first Scottish Cup home replay since the Forres game we can expect it tough from the League 2 team who have already recorded an away win over Shire in the Betfred Cup this season.
But we really need the fans to turn out in numbers to give the players that great extra help. Admission prices have been set at £10 for adults and £5 concessions, so please try to make the effort to get to Ochilview. You never know what might happen.