Peterhead boss McInally sees Betfred Cup clash with Dunfermline as another hard shift for team

Peterhead's Jason Brown
Picture by Darrell Benns
Peterhead's Jason Brown Picture by Darrell Benns

Peterhead boss Jim McInally wants his players to take their “free shot” at Championship Dunfermline in the Betfred Cup tomorrow.

The Blue Toon got their league cup group stage campaign under way with two points against League One Brechin City at Glebe Park.

It was goalless after 90 minutes and in the penalty shoot-out – part of the competition’s format when group games are drawn – defender Jason Brown held his nerve to secure the extra point.

McInally is relaxed about the Betfred Cup as his charges continue to work towards full fitness for their League Two season, with East End Park up next.

He said: “This cup’s got to be treated by part-time teams as still your pre-season.

“Dunfermline haven’t played on Saturday, which is not great for us as it leaves them fresh for tomorrow.

“They’ll pass the ball round us and we’ll have to work. You see how tired we were on Saturday – we’ll be a lot more tired tomorrow.

“We went there last year and lost 5-1, but we actually played quite well.

“Hopefully the score’s not as bad this time. We will try to win.”

Spectators will be looking for a bit more excitement tomorrow than was on offer at Glebe Park.

However, McInally, who only had four substitutes because of injuries, thought his players – some only playing their second 90 minutes of the summer – looked the part against a team from the league above them. He said: “It was a poor game.

“I don’t know if it was the heat – the pitch is really lush. The ball was slow and I wouldn’t like to have paid to watch that.

“It was nice to get the bonus point and not concede a goal.

“I thought our two young centre-backs (Brown and new boy Cameron Eadie) did really well again. They’ve done well in pre-season.

“They’ll get a testing again tomorrow night. We can play miles better than that, but it’s early in the season.”

In the opening period at Brechin, Blue Toon skipper Rory McAllister was denied twice when through on goal – first by a brilliant Jordan Tapping tackle and then seeing a left-footed volley deflected just past the post.

Up the other end, the busy Callum Tapping dragged a glorious opportunity past the far right post.

City should have been in front by the break, with Callum Tapping spurning more chances as Dene Shields also saw a back-post header saved and Sean Burns’ free-kick hit the bar.

There were less in the way of chances after half-time, but again it was Brechin who should have taken the lead, with Greg Fleming tipping the game’s best chance, a Shields header from point-blank range, over the bar.

In the shoot-out, Peterhead were first to blink, with full-back for the day Willie Gibson hitting the right post with his side’s third. However, Brechin defender Paul McLean then rolled his past the left post.

In sudden death, Giuliano Moreno’s blast was tipped on to the bar and out by the diving Fleming, which left Brown to smash into the top-left corner for the extra point.