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The Scottish Football Association


The Road to Hampden Blog - Third Round Preview

Friday, 02 December 2016

Over the course of this season’s competition, a guest blogger will attend a game of the round to talk about the day as a whole and this week Ronnie Charters will review the rearranged Beith vs. Morton match to see who will face Falkirk at home in the Fourth Round.



The Road to Hampden Blog – Third Round


It takes a lot for me to get out my bed early on a Saturday morning, but there is no better alarm clock to awake you from your slumber than the romance of the Scottish Cup.


As a 21-year-old student journalist and a lover of the beautiful game, nothing is better than waking up in the morning and knowing your afternoon is going to be filled with high-octane Scottish Cup drama.


This time it us the turn of the Third Round to entertain, and with teams from the Championship making their competitive debut, one fixture stuck out above the rest.


If there were ever a match that personified the love of the Scottish Cup, it would be found at Bellsdale Park in the picturesque setting of North Ayrshire.


The residents of such establishment are West of Scotland Premier Division side Beith Juniors and on Saturday they face off in what is being described as ‘the biggest game in the clubs history’ as they welcome Championship side Greenock Morton to Ayrshire.


The game was originally scheduled for last week but with the artic blast sweeping the nation, the junior side’s pitch fell to the weather (despite Morton lending their pitch covers for the week). 


‘The Mighty’ are set to see their average match attendance skyrocket to five times their usual footfall with many hoping to see a real miracle of the cup.


I caught up with Club President John Boal before the big game and he admitted the match will be all about the enjoyment for his players. 


He said: “We have to put things into perspective, it’s not a ladder we have to climb it’s a staircase. 


“This is a day for our supporters and our players to go out and enjoy themselves they have earned that right. 


“I know this seems as a David and Goliath affair but it’s the romance of the cup so we can live in hope of an upset.” 


Of course you would forgive John Boal and his club for getting caught up in the drama and romance of the cup, but when you see the size of the task they face, all sense of optimism quickly evaporates.


Morton make the 40 mile round trip down Scotland’s west coast buoyed by one of their best seasons in recent memory.


Having already experienced the taste of cup football at the national stadium with a League Cup semi-final defeat to Aberdeen, Jim Duffy and his men are setting their sights on another trip to Mount Florida.


Sitting third in the Championship, and with real hopes of promotion to Scotland’s top flight, Morton pose a real danger to any club hoping to carve their name into football’s oldest trophy. 


Saturday will see two sides, who would never meet in a month of Sundays, go head to head, showing just why the Scottish Cup is unpredictable, unparalleled and unrivalled. 


All I ask is for a nice sunny afternoon, a raucous atmosphere, high drama, plenty of goals and an all round top quality cup-tie. That is not too much to ask for is it?



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