Vale of Leithen 3
Edinburgh City 2
EoS PREMIER DIVISION
DAVE RYCE reports from Victoria Park
Two teams playing each other back-to-back is hardly unique in East of Scotland football, but when it does happen it tends to put the team who won the previous game at a disadvantage.
The proof was there at Innerleithen on Saturday as Vale, obviously still stinging from the late loss the previous Wednesday at Meadowbank, took the points with a superb display.
Vale showed a willingness to battle for every ball and took the lead after just five minutes. Steve Radzynski’s persistence out on the right saw him win the ball and, with few options available to him, tried his luck from just outside the area with a superb left-foot shot which flew high into the net.
Vale doubled their lead in the 23rd minute as Jamie Lauder floated a free kick into the box and Moffat rose to glance a header over keeper Alan MacIntosh and into the net.
City had spent much of the first half on the back foot, but pulled a goal back in the 42nd minute. A Dougie Gair free kick was flicked on by Paul Devlin and right back Gary Cenerazzo arrived to bullet home a header.
The second half started with as much of a bang as the first, with Vale scoring again six minutes after the restart. Again, it was Radzynski who started things off, picking up possession and feeding the ball across to Moffat. Moffat’s cross eluded Radzynski, who had made a run towards the front post to receive it, but the ball was deflected towards the back post, where Wayne Sproule rifled in a cracking shot.
But straight from kick off, City reduced Vale’s advantage back to one goal again, as Devlin was allowed plenty of space to shoot home.
The visitors received a huge blow in the 62nd minute as Gair received his second yellow card for a late challenge on Jamie Paterson and City had to see out the better part of half an hour a man short.
Although there was no let-up in the pace of the game, clear-cut chances became notably absent for either side as defences dominated, with only a Lauder free kick, which was well saved by MacIntosh, coming close to adding to the scoreline.
Vale of Leithen: C. Weir, J. Paterson, R. McKenzie, R. Miller, P. Lee, P. Greenhill, A. Martin, J. Lauder (J. Binnie 89), S. Moffat, S. Radzynski (C. Beaton 79), W. Sproule (J. Hall 85). Subs: S. Sproule, S. Devlin.