TYNECASTLE 16s delivered their fourth consecutive Scottish Cup triumph after beating Clydebank United 4-0 after a thoroughly dominant display by the Edinburgh youngsters.
This current crop of talented teens have certainly become accustomed to the artificial pitch at Airdrie United’s Excelsior Stadium having secured the first national title back in 2010 when playing at Under-13 level.
Speaking after about his side’s remarkable success, Tynecastle coach Douglas Ormston said: “It’s simply a phenomenal achievement. These boys have been here before and they’ve picked up another winner’s medal. They’re such a loyal group of boys and they keep fighting and dig away.”
Tynecastle should have been awarded a penalty in the fifth minute when a ball into the box appeared to strike the arm of Kyle Rafferty, but referee Andrew McBride waved play on.
Good link-up play between Tynecastle’s front pairing of Kyle Mitchell and Greg Kerr resulted in the former having a snapshot on goal, but his effort was straight at Ben Collinson.
A terrific corner from the left by Liam Thomson was then missed by Collinson, but the ball wouldn’t fall kindly to a Tynecastle player in and around the six yard box as Clydebank survived yet another scare.
Clydebank were struggling to create much in front of Billy Taylor’s goal as Kerr thought he was through, only to see Collinson race off his line ahead of the striker and clear the ball into the stand two minutes before the break.
Clydebank created their first clear opportunity of the tie two minutes into the second half and should have been ahead when Darren McKinlay’s cross was met by a free Brayden Coulman, but the defender miscued and headed wide of the target.
Coulman was left to rue his miss as Tynecastle finally broke the deadlock when Kerr played a pass into Mitchell, the little striker then showing superb accuracy by chipping the ball over Collinson from 16 yards.
Kerr won the race to the ball ahead of his opponent, but Andrew Gavin got back with a superb last-ditch tackle to prevent the striker getting his shot away on goal when in the clear.
The pressure on the Clydebank goal was relentless and Jason Kerr almost volleyed in a wonderful second as his strike went just wide of the far post.
The same player did make it 2-0 moments later when he latched on to Mark Shiells’ corner and smashed the ball home from eight yards with 15 minutes remaining.
Tynecastle then put the match to bed when a free kick by captain Craig Russell was met by Matthew Quinn at the back post to nod home his side’s third.
With dejection etched all over the faces of the Clydebank players, the rout was completed when Ryan Currie cut across goal and as his deflected shot broke into the path of substitute Euan Graham who drilled his shot into the net from 12 yards.
When asked if his players were capable of continuing this incredible run right through to Under-21s, Ormston added: “I hope so. That’s certainly the target anyway.”
Tynecastle FC: Billy Taylor, David Wright, Calum Cowan, Matthew Quinn, Euan Graham, Craig Russell, Jaimie Purves, Jason Kerr, Greg Kerr, Kyle Mitchell, Mark Shiells, Ciaron Small, Ryan Currie, Liam Thomson, David Henderson, Joseph Walker.
Clydebank United: Ben Collinson, Darren McKinlay, Kyle Rafferty, Andrew Gavin, Brayden Coulman, Andrew Weir, Mark Callaghan, Corey Pearson, Rob Harwood, David Coyle, Scott Holms, Stuart Andrews, Kane O’Neill, Christian Zihaliwa.