The first ever Coventry Thistle Cup was staged last week in memory of Coventry City legend Ian Gibson.
Gibson was born in Newton Stewart, a town in Dumfires and Galloway in Scotland, and the Cup was played for between Galloway Thistle and Stranraer Under 15s sides – Ian’s nephew Stuart Dalrymple is chairman of the youth section at Galloway Thistle. Stuart was joined by Ian’s brother Brian to present the cup to the winners.
Midfielder Gibson made 104 appearances for Coventry City, scoring 14 goals, between 1966 and 1970 and was a hugely popular figure with supporters. He died on 25th May 2016, aged 73.
The Coventry Thistle Cup match was accompanied by a fundraising night for various good causes too, with prizes on offer including CCFC tickets and a signed football.
Below is the match report from the inaugural cup provided to us by Galloway Thistle – well done to everyone involved!
U15 Match report - COVENTRY THISTLE CUP
Galloway Thistle 3 - 3 Stranraer FC (Stranraer won on penalties)
Thistle welcomed Alan Jenkins' Stranraer side to play for the inaugural Coventry Thistle Cup. This is a new cup in memory of the late Coventry legend and local man - Ian Gibson.
A perfect day for football and a decent support for both teams saw a perfect start by the Thistle boys as they went into a one nil lead through Jamie Slavin after just 4 minutes. Thistle couldn't capitalise on their lead though as they struggled to command the game in the middle of the park. A scrappy first half ended with Stranraer equalising shortly before the whistle.
Into the second half and the boys in blue made it 2-1 after 45 minutes followed shortly after by another Slavin goal which looked suspiciously offside. This half saw Stranraer grow stronger aided by Thistle making a number of changes. A couple of frantic goalmouth scrambles in the Galloway box could have seen Stranraer add to their tally as well as a couple of fine saves by Cameron Miller thwarting a couple of attacks.
Thistle re-took the lead on 63 minutes when Slavin completed a fine hat trick.
Stranraer equalized again 10 minutes from the end to leave the final score 3-3. Probably a fair reflection on the game.
'Taz' Thomson was immense today as a defensive midfielder. He was everywhere on the park and had a cracking game.
It was left to penalties to decide the outcome - no-ones favourite way to decide a game. Nerves were shot from coaches, players and spectators. The advantage ebbed and flowed until Stranraer struck the winning spot kick to claim theirs as the first name on the new cup. They thoroughly deserved their win - especially having played with no subs.
You had to feel for the Thistle boys at the end after the effort they put in and they were absolutely gutted.
The cup was presented to the Stranraer captain by Ian Gibson's brother Brian and nephew Stuart Dalrymple.