Linlithgow star says Forfar cup ‘upset’ was no surprise to Rose players

Michael Jones (front, second right) celebrates with his Rose team-mates after their win at Forfar
Michael Jones (front, second right) celebrates with his Rose team-mates after their win at Forfar
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Linlithgow Rose striker Michael Jones says he and his team-mates always felt they were capable of defeating Forfar in their cup replay.

Rose were the talk of Scottish football after they became the first junior side ever to make the last 16 of the Scottish Cup by beating the League One outfit on Tuesday night.

But according to the 18-year-old the Rose players knew after the first game that they had every chance of booking a last 16 clash with Ross County.

He told the Gazette: “After the first game when we came back from 10 men to draw 3-3 we believed we could win. We knew we could beat them because we felt we were the same type of level as they were.

“We felt we could have beaten them in the first game and were confident we could win from the start.

“It was a tight game and the weather didn’t help because there was a strong wind so the ball was just blowing out one half and holding up in the other half.

“They had the better of the first half but in the second half it was just a matter of time, it was coming.”

The former Aberdeen player went on for Colin Strickland midway through extra-time with simple instructions from boss Davie McGlynn.

He said: “He just said Sky Sports are here - go and do something.”

It was Jones’s challenge which forced a Forfar defender into a hurried clearance which Kevin Kelbie collected to net the winner.

And only a fine save from Forfar ’keeper Darren Hill prevented him adding a second Rose goal in a last-minute counter-attack.

He admitted: “I was raging the goalie saved it. I thought I had scored, it looked as if it was going in but the goalie got a fingertip to it. It was a great save, to be fair.

“As for the goal it was a long ball and I was challenging for it and it just fell for Kevin and he did well to put it away.

“It was great to celebrate with the fans and I think we had more fans there than Forfar. Their fans were quiet the whole game, the sounded more nervy than our fans. They were there for the fun of it and enjoying themselves.”

“It will be a tough game when we play Ross County, you’re playing a Premiership team. It just depends on what their mentality is going into the game and how well we play as well. If we put a full team out we might be able to get something.”

With ever-increasing league and cup commitments likely to test Rose’s squad in the coming months, Jones is hopeful he can become more involved after a stop-start time since signing on at Linlithgow following his release from Aberdeen last summer.

He said: “I started off well but then I got injured and fell out the team. But I feel as if I am picking back up and playing more games. We have a big squad which we’ll need with the games we have coming up.”