Livingston U20 1 Berwick Rangers U20 2
Monday 13th February 2017
Berwick Rangers Development team returned to the summit of the SPFL Development League East by taking the 3 points from this game, the third and final meeting of the teams this season, leaving them unbeaten against their full-time League 1 counterparts. 3 weeks ago, Berwick lost a last-minute goal to give Livingston the share of the points at Shielfield so were keen to avenge that result.
However, within a minute of the game starting they were one behind, the defence left sleeping as Matthew Knox scored to leave the team shell-shocked. However, this perhaps sparked the young ‘Gers into life and during the remainder of the first half managed to keep Livingston at bay as well as having chances from Watt, Stephen Scott, a trialist midfielder and Ricardo Kessels but ended up going in at the break 1 down.
Berwick came out the blocks quicker in the second half and from a corner Ryan Porteous poked home from close range to even the game up. Livingston threatened at times but failed to bring a save from Brennan for most of the half. Berwick took the lead midway through the half, a free kick in the Berwick half was taken short to Renne Donker who fired the ball into Daniel Watt who managed to control and play in Stephen Scott who blasted home the winner for the away side. Scott is certainly on a good scoring run at the moment having score 3 goals for his loan side Penicuik in their last 2 games against Broxburn and Boness.
With 10 minutes remaining Livingston were reduced to 10 men when Josh Mullin received a 2nd yellow card for dissent towards referee Peter Stuart. Further chances followed including a great close range save for Livingston goalkeeper Gary Maley when Kyle Scott looked like he was going to make the scoreline comfortable.
Berwick continued to see out the game with little trouble and claimed the 3 points to see them return to the top of the Development League East at least until Tuesday evenings games featuring Raith Rovers v Forfar and Stirling Albion v Cowdenbeath.
Head Youth Coach Derek McKenzie was delighted with the result commenting “I thought we stuck to our task well despite going a goal down early. We played our way into the game and had some half chances in the first half. Second half we seemed to impose ourselves on the game and we have got our rewards with Ryan and Stephen scoring. Stephens confidence is high at the moment as he’s scoring goals for Penicuik in the Superleague and our recent signing Scott Sutherland has been doing likewise for Jeanfield Swifts in the same league which is no mean feat.”
Berwick welcome Stirling Albion next week with McKenzie previewing the game: “It will be another tough game that we will have to be at our best for. We went to Stirling before Christmas and they gave us a bit of a lesson beating us 5-0. We are a bit battered and bruised after this game, Ryan Porteous has picked up an ankle knock and Scott Sutherland has suspected torn ligaments in his shoulder from the challenge at the end of the game there, so that’s a blow. I felt we stood up really well to our opponent’s physicality and we certainly weren’t going to let them bully us. We will take stock of where we are and then look at the squad after the weekend.”
TEAM : Brennan, Bauld, Herriot, Donkor, Cook, Trialist, Leao Kessels, K.Scott, Watt, S.Scott, Porteous.
Subs : Allan, McDonald, Sutherland, Henderson, Ingram, Helm