Saints youth reach cup final
3rd May 2022
Saints youth reach cup final after beating Dunfermline in a 9 goal thriller.
St. Johnstone Brush Dunfermline Aside Enroute to Reaching the Scotland Cup Final
St. Johnstone Youth defeated Dunfermline Athletic in a thrilling contest, coming out on top after an end-to-end 90 minutes of football. In the end, the home side were comfortable winners and were good value for their victory.
Both sides contested an entertaining Scotland Cup Semi-final, which was full of entertainment and played at 100 miles an hour for most of the 90 minutes. Saints had beaten Hibernian to get here, whilst Dunfermline knocked out Celtic along the way - and the teams definitely showed that quality again today.
The young Saints’ got off to a great start and were pressing high up the field from the beginning. Filip Franczak almost had his side 1-0 up with the first chance of the game, after finding a pocket of space inside the area, with his shot dragging just wide of the post. St. Johnstone then took the lead just four minutes into the game, with Adam McMillan slipping Jackson Mylchreest in with a defence-splitting pass, catching the ‘Pars’ back 4 off guard. Mylchreest took a touch and smashes the ball past the keeper and into the back of the net, via the post. An electric start and nothing less than deserved.
Saints almost doubled their advantage soon after, with a good cross into the box headed goalwards, however, the Dunfermline keeper got down low and kept it out well with a brilliant save.
McMillan almost turned from provider to goalscorer, taking a neat touch and turning inside, past the opposition defence, and curling an effort towards goal - forcing the keeper into an acrobatic diving save to keep his side in the game. The visitors were hanging by a thread.
St. Johnstone finally got that second goal, extending their lead to a 2 goal margin just 22 minutes into the game. A curling Scott Bright corner into the box was met by a thumping Mylchreest header, which flew past the goalkeeper and into the back of the net.
The hosts were in their groove now and soon added a 3rd goal of the game, with Mylchreest grabbing his hattrick. Bright stepped up and fired a free-kick from the edge of the box at goal, with his effort being saved by the goalie - only as far as Mylchreest though, who fired the ball into the back of the net. 3 goals in just 27 minutes for the number 9 who was on red hot form.
After a blistering start to the game for Saints, with a relentless attacking approach earning a 3 goal lead, the match began to slow down a bit. Dunfermline were keen to ensure that they did not fall any further behind and dug in, closing the half out without incident.
Half-Time: St. Johnstone 3-0 Dunfermline Athletic
After Saints had begun the first half with a goal in just four minutes, Dunfermline were the side who began the second half with vigour and intent. The ‘Pars’ were committing bodies forward, earning a free-kick in a dangerous area. This was then lobbed into the box and powerfully headed past Thomson and into the back of the net, with St. Johnstone’s keeper left with no chance of stopping it.
This prompted a good response from Saints. Rather than crumbling under the pressure, the youngsters instead worked twice as hard and recovered pretty quickly. St. Johnstone almost added a 4th after some neat play from Mylchreest, who crossed the ball to the back post, unfortunately, Kyle Scott could not quite get his head on the end of it.
After a good spell of attacking play, substitute Fran Franczak added the 4th goal 63 minutes in. A good cut back into the box found the winger in space, who toe-poked the ball into the bottom corner with his first touch since coming on.
Saints continued their fine attacking form, adding a 5th goal of the game just 5 minutes after the hour mark. Franczak skipped past his man down the left-hand side and played the ball to Ben McChrystal, who turned his man well rifled into the roof of the net.
St. Johnstone were not done there, however, and the route continued. The 6th goal of the game came 17 minutes from time. Mylchreest topped off the perfect Striker’s performance with his 4th goal of the game, turning past the defender and driving the ball low and hard into the back of the net.
Dunfermline Athletic then fought back, earning a couple of consolation goals in the dying embers of the game. An excellent cross from number 2 to the back post was neatly finished by 12, who volleyed the ball into the back of the net. The young ‘Pars’ then scored again with virtually the last kick of the ball, a scramble in the box was tucked away by 15 who curled the ball past the keeper.
Final Score: St. Johnstone 6-3 Dunfermline Athletic
After an electric game of football in Perth, which ended up being a 9 goal thriller, it is St. Johnstone that will go into the Scotland Cup final and deservedly so. The young Saints put on a show and were brilliant from start to finish.
Man of the Match: Jackson Mylchreest
Match report: Samuel Porritt