You know how the famous saying goes, you wait ages for a League Cup game and then two almost come along at once. Which is precisely the case for Blue Star and after squeezing past Heaton Stannington A last weekend, another knockout fixture awaits.
One that sees Brian Smith’s men on the road once again and although progress to the second round was secured at Cochrane Park almost seven days ago, NE15’s finest were certainly made to work for their result.
Work that was clearly made harder because of the playing surface. The 4G pitch definitely served as a great leveller that afternoon and after going behind early on, Blue Star subsequentially needed to find a leveller of their own.
Were it not for Dan Lanning’s late equaliser in normal time, this preview may have been looking at a rescheduled league game. However, the young forward’s powerful strike meant he and his teammates had just purchased a ticket to the lottery.
The lottery of penalties that is and after being spotless from the spot, Heaton Stannington’s second string were finally foiled from 12 yards. A second round of penalty drama for the season and thankfully the same positive outcome.
Of course, cup football is certainly a different beast to that of its league cousin and those involved in last Saturday’s fixture would have certainly been taught a lesson – underestimate the opposition at your peril.
Which is what they cannot afford to do against Forest Hall Celtic, they operate just one league below and would love nothing more than to claim the biggest scalp possible. They made light work of Gosforth Bohemian Reserves in the previous round and are now ready for such a massive test.
Something which sets up Saturday’s clash rather nicely indeed. A big thanks to Forest Hall Celtic for the upcoming hospitality and for those who will be attendance from an away perspective, safe travels both there and back.