Beith Juniors vs. Ayr United
William Hill Scottish Cup third round
Saturday 24th November 2018. Kick-off 1.30pm
On Saturday, Ayr United make the 25 mile journey to Bellsdale Park to take on Beith Juniors in the Scottish Cup tie of the round. The match pitches the League 1 champions and Championship leaders against the West Region Premier Division champions in the first meeting between an Ayrshire Junior and Senior club in the Scottish Cup.
It is over 20 years since The Honest Men were on the wrong end of a Scottish Cup upset and were knocked out by a club from a lower division and Ian McCall’s side overcame North Region Junior champions Banks O’Dee last season. On-form Beith, meanwhile, will be looking to make it third time lucky at this stage of the competition, having been knocked out by Airdrie and Greenock Morton in the third round in 2010 and 2016.
The Opposition: John Miller has overseen a successful period in Beith’s history since returning to the club as manager in April 2013. Under Miller, the Mighty won the Scottish Junior Cup for the first time in 2016 and, having led them to promotion from the Super League 1st Division in 2014, Miller added the Premier Division title last season when Beith pipped Auchinleck Talbot by one point on the final day of the season.
That title success has given Beith a third crack at the senior Scottish Cup this season (they also entered in season 2010/11 after the club’s first Premier Division win, also under John Miller). They have already overcome Threave Rovers, Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale, Nairn County and Linlithgow Rose to reach the third round once more.
That 4-0 win over Linlithgow started sequence of wins that now totals five after Saturday’s 3-0 victory over Largs Thistle in the Super Premier Division. ‘The Cabes’ occupy third place in the Super Premier Division, 13 points behind runaway leaders Hurlford United, albeit with two games in hand.
Connor McGlinchey has been the Bellsdale Park side’s top performer this season and is in line to make his 100th appearance for Beith on Saturday. The full-back – who won League 2 while at Peterhead in 2014 – has 10 goals in 20 appearances this term, six coming from the penalty spot. At the other end of the park, former Ayr United stopper Stephen Grindlay is in his fifth season at Beith while another ex-Ayr player, Andy Reid, has been with Beith for over 10 years, scoring 195 times in 321 appearances.
Ayr United – WWWDD
Beith Juniors – WWWWW
Team News: Jamie Adams and Alan Forrest are out with injuries.
Ian says: “We must ensure that we are not this seasons Scottish Cup story. We will ensure Beith are given every respect as they are a good side. The pitch should be in good condition and although there is plenty of chat about the slope we aren’t bothered about that. We are going with a strong team and the only thing that matters is getting into the next round. It will be a great atmosphere and we are really looking forward to something different.”
History vs. Beith:
Beith Juniors were formed in 1938 as a successor to the disbanded senior side Beith who had previously competed in the Scottish Football League between 1923 and 1926. The newly formed Ayr United and Beith met five times in 2011, with Ayr United recording wins in the Scottish Consolation Cup and Ayrshire Cup after two replays in February and the Scottish Qualifying the following season in October. Beith’s only win over the Honest Men in 11 meetings came in the Ayrshire Cup in 1926, while the last match between the sides in August 1938 saw Ayr record a 7-1 victory.
On this date: in 2007, United were knocked out the Scottish Cup at the third round stage by Partick Thistle at Firhill. Alex Williams gave United an early lead in Glasgow but Mark Roberts struck on the stroke of half-time and Liam Buchanan scored the winner in the second-half. Eight of the Thistle starting XI that day also played for Ayr United during their career.
Referee – Colin Steven
Assistant Referee 1 – Andrew McWilliam
Assistant Referee 2 – Jonathan Bell
We thank you for travelling to support the team. Your support is vital. However, we all need to be able to enjoy watching games in a safe and considerate environment.
We ask that you support the players and team without resorting to unacceptable behaviour that can lead either Club or individuals facing charges.
All Scottish grounds have a searching policy as a condition of entry.
Possessing or using any pyro device and anyone detected will be liable to prosecution and a lifetime ban from football stadiums.
Copies of Ayr United’s Unacceptable Conduct Policy can be found on our website. https://ayrunitedfc.co.uk/unacceptable-conduct-policy/
Thank you and enjoy the game.