Raith Rovers lose penalty bonus after Livingston stalemate

Raith Rovers lost out on a bonus point in a penalty shoot out against Livingston in the Premier Sports Cup.

Wednesday, 21st July 2021, 9:56 pm
Updated Wednesday, 21st July 2021, 10:12 pm
Dario Zanatta on the ball for Raith against Livingston.

The match ended in a stalemate after John McGlynn’s men had the better of the play against their Premiership rivals at the Tony Macaroni Arena.

The result leaves Raith top of Group D ahead of their final group stage match against Alloa at Stark's Park on Saturday.

Rovers, in their new red away kit - and with fans of their own in the away end - handed a debut to new midfield signing, Blaise Riley-Snow, with the other new face who arrived this week, striker Ethon Varian, on the bench.

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The visitors completely dominated the first half but couldn’t find the goal that their play merited.

The first chance fell to Raith on six minutes when Lewis Vaughan played the ball through the fellow striker Dario Zanatta but despite playing the ball past Livi keeper Max Stryjek he was at too acute an angle and his shot hit the side net.

Six minutes later the same combination ended with Zanatta cutting inside but his shot was poor and it trundled wide.

In the 17th minute the travelling support screamed as one for a penalty after a shot from a Vaughan appeared to strike a Livi arm, but referee Willie Collum was unmoved.

Five minutes later and the Lions had what would prove to be their only attempt on goal in the first half when a Bruce Anderson shot was saved comfortably by Jamie MacDonald.

On 31 minutes Zanatta tried again but this time his angled strike went wide.

Five minutes later a the first yellow card of the much was produced - Livi captain Scott Pittman booked for a pull on Brad Spencer in the middle of the park.

The first half ended goalless though Raith manager John McGlynn would have been delighted with his team having completely outplayed their Premiership opponents even without the goal their dominance merited.

Just seconds into the second half Vaughan was close with a shot on the turn which went narrowly wide with Stryjek beaten.

A minute Riley-Snow was slack in possession and the ball was played through to Livi striker Anderson but he couldn’t outmuscle Christophe Berra and his shot on the stretch was saved by MacDonald.

On 61 minutes the hosts came close to taking the lead.

A shot from sub Cristain Montano was parried by MacDonald, it fell to Anderson but with the goal at his mercy the Raith keeper somehow managed to block the ball as it was blasted at his goal.

From the resultant corner the Lions went close again when the ball fell to defender Fitzwater but his shot flew high over the bar.

From then on neither side made any real inroads towards each other’s goal and the match ended 0-0.

The penalties went to sudden death and Livingston keeper tipped the effort from Rovers sub Aaron Arnott onto the bar to nick the bonus point for Livi.

Livingston: Stryjek, McMillan, Parks, Fitzwater, Longridge, Holt, Pittman, Penrice, Shinnie, Lewis, Anderson - Subs - Barden, Kelly, Obileye, Williamson, Montano, Sibbald, Reilly.

Raith Rovers: MacDonald, Tumilty, Dick, Berra, Benedictus, Connolly, Vaughan, Zanatta, Spencer, Tait, Riley-Snow - Subs - Thomson, McKay, Varian, Arnott, Mitchell, Young.

Referee: Willie Collum