Auchinleck Talbot v Renfrew Juniors

Talbot ended the season in style, beating Renfrew 5-2 to add the Evening Times cup to their list of silverware for the season.
Prior to kick off Talbot were presented with the league trophy and then it was down to business.
It was immediately apparent both sides had come to have a go and within the first few minutes Love lifted a shot over the bar at one end before Zok did likewise down the other.
The 1st close call came in the 8th minute. Young met a ball in behind the Frew defence & laid it out 1st time to Milliken on the left. He thumped a shot at goal that had Baird beaten but struck his right hand post.
The game continued to flow from end to end and Renfrew had a decent chance in the 21st minute. McDaid picked the ball up in the centre & switched it out left to find Jones at the edge of the area. He fired on target but Leishman held it at his near post.
Seconds later Milliken had a glorious chance to put Talbot ahead. The Renfrew defence failed to cut out a ball through the middle & it came straight through to Milliken. He only had Baird to beat but the keeper stood his ground & saved with his legs when Milky tried to prod it past him.
Talbot took the lead in the 24th minute. Young surged through the centre of midfield & sent it out wide right to find SHANKLAND who carried on into the box before drilling a shot past Baird.
The Bot were controlling the game but unable to add to their lead & almost paid for it in the 35th minute. Boyd cleared McDaid’s cross into the centre to the edge of the area where it broke away from McGoldrick allowing O’Keefe the chance & he sent a low drive just past Leishman’s right post.
The game continued to ebb & flow in the latter stages of the half though neither keeper was tested.
Benton had his name taken in the 44th minute for a trip on Boyd and the half ended with Talbot taking a 1-0 lead in at the interval.
Talbot made a strong start to the 2nd half and came close to a 2nd goal in the 46th minute. McGoldrick carried it out from the back before releasing a pass down the left to find Young. He fired a shot across goal that sailed just past the left post with the aid of a slight deflection. When Shankland’s corner came over the defence failed to cut it out & the ball made its way to the back post where LOVE prodded it home from close range to double Talbot’s lead.
It looked as though Talbot were well in control but Renfrew had other ideas and it was game on again when they pulled one back in the 51st minute. Benton did the damage, cutting in past Pope & powering the ball across goal, and although Leishman got a hand to it to keep his effort out, ZOK was in the right place to hook it home from close range at the back post.
Renfrew now made a substitution with Nisanci coming on in place of McDaid.
Hyslop picked up a caution in the 54th minute for a foul on Forbes and a minute later Talbot had a let off when Benton gathered the ball out on the left & curled a shot at goal that beat Leishman but clipped off the top of the bar.
Renfrew capitalised on their good spell & levelled the score in the 58th minute. Benton ran into space down the left wing before releasing the ball inside to JONES and he coolly slotted it past Leishman to make it 2-2.
Talbot responded and were unlucky on the hour mark when Young split the defence with a pass to send Milliken through but Baird came to his side’s rescue, racing out to the edge of the area to beat him to it.
Three minutes later Baird produced a wonder stop to keep Renfrew level. Young did well outside the penalty area, skipping past a couple of challenges before sliding it out to Shankland on the left. He cut inside onto his right foot & drilled a shot inside the near post that the Bot support all had counted, but somehow Baird made the stop to his right & when the ball spun high inside the 6-yard box it didn’t fall for Love & the defence managed to clear.
It was then Talbot’s chance to have a narrow escape. O’Keefe sped free down the left & squared it for Zok who ought to have scored from 4 yards out but hit Leishman with his shot.
It was anybody’s game at this stage but just when they needed it Talbot found an extra gear. The Bot regained the lead in the 70th minute when Hyslop met a ball through the centre & glanced a header to his right to pick out YOUNG who placed it inside Baird’s left post to make it 3-2.
With quarter of an hour remaining Talbot hit the woodwork for the 2nd time. Boyd won a corner down the right and when it came over McGoldrick’s header bounced off the turf & up onto the top of the bar before going over.
Renfrew weren’t done though & they nearly levelled again in the 80th minute. Shankland’s pass to Love was intercepted & Jones raced away down the left before whipping a dangerous cross into the centre where Pope succeeded in beating Zok to the ball to turn it behind for a corner.
Talbot restored their two goal cushion, and effectively ended Renfrew’s hopes, with a 4th in the 82nd minute. Milliken did well out on the right, holding the ball up, before releasing it to the overlapping Boyd. He cut it back to LOVE who tucked it away into the opposite corner.
Talbot wasted a chance to extend their lead a few minutes later. Milliken turned smartly away from Heffron to race through down the left. He had Love free on the 6-yard line for a tap in but his final ball was just a bit short.
Both sides now made changes with MacDonald replacing Forbes for Renfrew & Findlay coming on for Love.
The scoring was completed in the 86th minute. Young lifted a ball down the right where Milliken outpaced Ramsay before cutting the ball back for HYSLOP who passed the ball just inside the left post.
Renfrew kept going & were denied a late consolation when Benton surged clear on the right of the area and smashed a great strike across goal which produced an equally impressive save from Leishman.
Renfrew completed their substitutions in the final minute when Campbell came on for Ramsay.
As the game moved into injury time Talbot came within a whisker of adding to their tally. Shankland pulled a corner back out to Boyd and his shot was blocked by the arm of Campbell, resulting in a free kick 20 yards out & a caution for the substitute. Shankland took it & very nearly got his 2nd as his low drive flew wide of the wall & just past the left post.
This was a fitting end to the season and the fans at Newlandsfield certainly got their money’s worth with Talbot worthy winners in the end.

Talbot – Leishman, Lyle, Pope, McGoldrick, White, Boyd, Young, Hyslop, Love, Shankland, Milliken
Subs – Findlay, G Wilson, S Johnstone

Renfrew – Baird, Mulgrew, Gordon, Heffron, Ramsay, Forbes, McDaid, Benton, Zok, Jones, O’Keefe
Subs – Nisanci, MacDonald, Nicholson, Cameron, Campbell

Talbot Goal 1 - Mark Shankland
Mark Shankland opens the scoring for Talbot, as he fires a thunderous shot towards goal from inside the box. 1-0.
Talbot Goal 2 - Robert Love
Early in the second half, Love pounces at the back post and slots the ball home. 2-0.
Talbot Goal 2 Celebration
Robert Love can’t help but show how happy he is at scoring for Talbot in a cup final.
Renfrew Goal 1
Renfrew pull one back, as the ball gets poked home in front of a half empty net. 2-1.
Renfrew Goal 2
And Renfrew are back in the game! From inside the left-hand side of the box, Renfrew equalise and make it 2-2.
Talbot Goal 3
Talbot are back in front! From close range, ‘Butch’ smashes the ball into the back of the net. 3-2. (Apologies for picture quality…got excited at goal!)
Talbot Goal 4
Love scores his second and Talbot’s fourth with a long range header. 4-2.
Talbot Goal 5 - Dwayne Hyslop
Dwayne Hyslop rounds off the scoring, as he races into the box and fires the ball past the ‘keeper. 5-2.
Action 4
Keir Milliken fires a ferocious shot towards goal and sadly gets thwarted by the woodwork.
Action 3
Everybody can only watch Young’s shot come agonisingly close to hitting the back of the net.
Action 2
Milliken watches closely, as Pope tries to find him with a pass.
Action 1
Stephen White tries to muscle his way up the park.
Action 5
Renfrew try to get their message across to each other.
Action 6
The Renfrew ‘keeper bravely gathers the ball from the feet of Talbot’s Mark Shankland.
Action 8
Keir and Robert discuss what went wrong with the previous missed opportunity.
Action 7
A celebratory fist-pump after seeing Talbot score.
Action 9
The crowd closely watch the action unfold.
M.O.M - Martin McGoldrick
Man of the Match – Martin McGoldrick.
Talbot Lift Trophy
Bryan Young’s son helps Talbot’s Wullie Lyle to lift the Evening Times Champions Cup.
Evening Times Champions Cup Winners 2016 - Auchinleck Talbot
Evening Times Champions Cup Winners 2016 – Auchinleck Talbot FC

Cumnock Juniors v Auchinleck Talbot

Talbot completed a clean sweep of victories over old foes Cumnock, defeating them for the 4th time this season to book their place in the Evening Times cup final.
The Talbot ranks were depleted by injury & the defence had a makeshift look about it with Lyle partnering White in the centre of defence, Boyd filling in at right-back & the management team doubling as substitutes.
Despite this, Talbot got off to a strong start & nearly took the lead after 4 minutes. Pope fired a free kick from his own half into the Cumnock box which Hyslop headed down into the path of Shankland whose shot just cleared the crossbar.
Ronald looked Cumnock’s main threat, and he provided Malone with a chance in the 9th minute when he got round the outside of Pope & fired a low cross into the near post which Malone flicked on target, only for Leishman to produce a fine save to deny him.
Cumnock made an early change, bringing on Scott in place of McKenzie after 17 minutes.
Johnson was called into action in the 19th minute after Love fed the ball back to Young on the right & his cross to the back post had to be punched clear by the Nock keeper.
Milliken came close a few minutes later when he out-muscled Esplin to win the ball just outside the Nock box before firing over the bar.
Samson had his name taken in the 26th minute when he tripped Steven Wilson 22 yards out, just as he was about to shoot. Shankland took the free kick & curled it over the wall for the far corner. It looked to be heading in but Johnson dived full length to tip it round his right post.
Talbot were making most of the running & they threatened again in the 32nd minute. Love played it out right to find Shankland & he played an inviting ball across the face of the penalty area but there was no one in the 6-yard box to convert for Talbot.
Wilson ought to have put Talbot ahead in the 34th minute when he met Milliken’s cross from the left but he guided a free header over the bar from the centre of goal.
Finally, Talbot made their pressure count in the 36th minute when they moved ahead with a well-constructed goal. Talbot players swapped passes down the right before Milliken squared it across to YOUNG & he passed the ball inside Johnson’s left post from 18 yards to give Talbot the lead.
Cumnock hadn’t offered much threat but they did have a half chance right on the stroke of half-time when Boyd conceded a free kick 30 yards out. Scott hit it but whilst he got it up & over the wall it didn’t dip in time & flew over the bar & Talbot went in a goal ahead at the interval.
There was no let up from Talbot after the re-start & they made all of the early running in the 2nd half. Shankland sent Boyd free down the right in the 51st minute & Lundie did well to head his dangerous cross clear in the centre.
Moments later the Nock defence were stretched again. Love beat Wood to Shankland’s hanging cross & nodded it back across goal where Young attempted to steer it home, only to see his effort blocked by Murphy.
The pressure continued & Talbot won a free kick wide right of the penalty area which Shankland swept to the far post where Pope just failed to make contact.
Cumnock managed to force a couple of corners in quick succession but could make nothing of them and then Ronald had a half chance when he latched onto a ball over the top but he dragged it out wide left before firing a shot well wide of target.
Cumnock were thrown a lifeline in the 59th minute when hesitant defending allowed them to equalise. There seemed little danger when a ball came over the top but Lyle hesitated for a fraction, letting it bounce, and SCOTT nicked in behind him & slotted it past Leishman to make it 1-1.
Rather than lift Cumnock the goal seemed to energise Talbot who stepped up a gear.
Steven Wilson had a decent crack at goal in the 61st min when he cut in from the left & fired wide of target. A minute later Hyslop had a half chance to restore Talbot’s lead. Love closed down Crawford & blocked his attempted clearance. It spun inside the area to Hyslop who could have hit it 1st time but opted to take a touch & Murphy was able to block.
Milliken then tried his luck from distance, firing a powerful shot wide of target from 30 yards.
The referee bizarrely awarded Cumnock a free kick when Hyslop beat his opposite number to the ball & kicked it off him, and Talbot nearly paid for the referee’s blunder when Scott whipped a dangerous ball in from the right that glanced off the top of Murphy’s head & wide of target.
Wilson squandered a golden chance to put Talbot ahead in the 68th minute. He threaded the ball out to Milliken on the right of the area & Johnson could only parry his shot on target. The ball came out to Wilson 12 yards from goal but he shot past the right hand post with the keeper stranded.
Watt found himself in the book in the 69th minute for dissent & Steven Wilson joined him a few minutes later when he was penalised for a late tackle.
The longer the game went on the more Talbot asserted their authority, pushing Cumnock back deeper & deeper into their own half.
Cumnock had a rare chance to test the Bot defence in the 80th minute. Hyslop conceded a free kick out on the right for a foul on Samson, receiving a booking into the bargain, & Scott whipped the ball over to the far post but it proved to have just too much on it & no one could get a touch.
Talbot were unfortunate not to take the lead in the 82nd minute. Shankland fizzed a cross over from the right touchline for Love to attack. He dived to head it for goal but it cannoned off Crawford & flew just past the post.
A minute later Talbot missed their 2nd glaring chance of the evening. Love did well out on the wing, jinking past Wood into the penalty area. He pulled it back for Young whose shot was blocked by a defender. The ball broke kindly, falling to Shankland straight in front of goal but he opted to go for power & the spectacular finish & ended up volleying over from 8 yards.
Fortunately, no harm was done as Talbot took the lead in their next attack. Leishman knocked the ball out to Young & he scurried forward from midfield before releasing it out right to MILLIKEN who slammed a low drive past Johnson to put Talbot 2-1 ahead in the 84th minute.
Cumnock looked a beaten team & frustration got to Ronald who picked up a caution for a clumsy challenge on Milliken.
Tucker made a late change in the 87th minute when Love limped off the field to be replaced by Findlay. The sub almost made the perfect impact, lobbing a shot on target from out wide on the right that Johnson had to claw away from his right hand post.
In the closing seconds Wood managed to escape a yellow card despite persistent chirping at the ref, only to get booked in injury time for flattening Shankland by the corner flag. Talbot took the free kick short & worked it back to Hyslop who thundered a shot over the bar from 25 yards in the last action of the match.
This was a good performance from the Bot who could and should have won by a more convincing margin. Next for Talbot is the season’s finale at Newlandsfield where they will be presented with the league trophy before facing Renfrew in the Evening Times final.

Cumnock – Johnson, Wood, Crawford, Lundie, Murphy, Esplin, Ronald, Samson, Watt, Malone, McKenzie
Subs – Scott, Quinn, Lowe, Shepherd

Talbot – Leishman, Lyle, Pope, Hyslop, White, Boyd, Young, S Wilson, Milliken, Shankland, Love
Subs – Sloan, McLuckie, Findlay, Johnstone

Auchinleck Talbot