Match date: 14th August 2021 Kickoff: 2.30pm

The first East Lothian derby of the Season attracted a large crowd to New Countess Park on Saturday and a keenly contested game was anticipated with Dunbar sitting in sixth place in the League table, and the visitors in third place.

The hosts got of to the perfect start in the fourth minute when Andy Jones ran clear on the left and his fierce cross to the back post was headed into the net by Dunbar’s captain Fraser McLaren to send them into a 1-0 lead.

Three minutes later and it was level again when Musselburgh equalised. Greg Page’s shot was deflected for a corner which then fell for Lloyd Fiddler to be denied by Dunbar’s keeper but Darren Downie was first to react to the loose ball and stroked home from close range to make it 1-1.

Four minutes later and Musselburgh scored again after Jordan Orru was upended inside the box and Josh Jeffries made no mistake from the resultant penalty sending the Dunbar keeper the wrong way from the spot kick.

Musselburgh went close from a McManus header before Jordan Orru was unlucky to see his shot rebound from the post,  but Dunbar were still dangerous on the break and Andy Jones went close with a rising shot after good work from Darren Handling.

Play raged from end to end and Calum Donaldson went close for the visitors before a Dunbar free kick fell kindly for Andy Jones and his looping shot almost caught out the Musselburgh keeper.

Musselburgh were using the ball well and denying Dunbar possession and just before the break Josh Jeffries went close from a free kick before Bradley Whyte drifted clear on the right only to be denied by a fine save from Daniel Laing in the Dunbar goal but the visitors went in at the break with a slender lead.

The visitors started the second half strongly and had a header from a corner cleared of the Dunbar goal line as they looked to kill of the game but the hosts were still not out of it and almost equalised in the 58th minute when Andy Jones squared for Fraser McLaren to watch his shot deflected of Greg Page for a corner with the keeper beaten.

Darren Downie set up Josh Jeffries on the hour mark but again Laing denied him with a fine save before both teams rang the changes in an effort to gain all three points.

Dunbar then began to dominate and Andy Jones was left one on one with the keeper with 17 minutes left but his shot went inches wide before Michael McFarlane was unlucky to see his header from a corner kick roll along the top of the crossbar before being cleared. Andy Jones then ran almost the full length of the pitch in a Dunbar counter attack and fired over the bar with only the keeper to beat.

The Dunbar pressure finally paid of nine minutes from time when a high ball fell for Andy Jones inside the box and his squared pass was fired home from close range by substitute Johnny Edmond to make the score 2-2.

With Dunbar creating chance after chance Bob Berry fired over from a narrow angle before Johnny Edmond went close after a sweeping move between Berry and Jones and right at the death a great move involving Darren Handling, Nicky Weir and Andy Jones ended with Jones shot going inches wide with the Musselburgh defence static.

A really entertaining game ended with both sides sharing the spoils in a four goal thriller but Dunbar must be wondering how they never clinched all three points with a stirring late onslaught Probably a fair result though with Musselburgh the better side in the first half and playing some lovely possession football but credit to Dunbar for coming back strongly and picking up another point to move them up one place in the League table.

Two difficult away games for Dunbar this week at Blackburn United on Wednesday night and Linlithgow Rose on Saturday. Our next game at New Countess Park is our big Scottish Cup challenge against Broxburn Athletic, with tickets for this monumental tie now on sale via the club’s Fanbase app:

Dunbar United :- Daniel Laing, Grant Thomson, Michael McFarlane, Dean Whitson, Evan Fleming, Kieran Ingram, Fraser Neave, Bob Berry, Andy Jones, Fraser McLaren, Darren Handling.

Substitutes :- John Johnstone, Jordan Purves, Johnny Edmond, Nicky Weir, Steven Hay, Michael Fairnie.

Musselburgh Athletic :- Ben McGinley, Callum Donaldson, Jordan Orru, John McManus, Declan O’Kane, Josh Jeffries, Bradley Whyte, Liam Reid, Lloyd Fiddler, Darren Downie, Greg Page.

Substitutes :- Jackie Myles, Joe Hamill, Conor Thomson, Bradley Donaldson, Ethan Wynne, Liam Gregory, Ben Cameron.

Referee :- Ryan Lee.

Asst Referees:- Michael Dixon, Niamh Westwood.

Match report courtesy of Laurie Wood

Photos by Gordon Maitland.