Brora Rangers join list of Scottish Cup giant killers with win over Hearts

By Andrew SouthwickBBC Scotland

"In a normal season this would be an astronomical result," said Brora Rangers manager Steven Mackay in the aftermath the Highland League side's Scottish Cup victory over Hearts.

Christophe Berra appeared to have saved the Championship leaders' blushes by cancelling out Jordan MacRae's early opener with 20 minutes remaining. But Martin MacLean replied five minutes later to stun Robbie Neilson's men.

"You throw in the circumstances that surrounded this game," continued Mackay. "We haven't played a game since the first week in January. We've had five training sessions and one friendly and that's it. We had no right whatsoever to win this game."

Hearts, finalists for the last two years and eight-time winners of the trophy, are out at the second round stage. The cup is famous for throwing up shocks, but just where does this one rank? Is it the biggest upset yet?

'They're from the capital, we have a population of 800'

A delighted Brora chairman William Powrie pointed out that Hearts have the fourth biggest budget in Scottish football, are based in the capital and are about to win promotion back to the Premiership, while Brora, 212 miles north of Edinburgh, has a population of 800.

"In terms of David v Goliath stories this has to be up there with the best", he told BBC Scotland.

Hearts may be in the second tier following relegation last season, but head coach Neilson has said his side are aiming for top four on their top flight return. They had two Scotland internationals starting, Christophe Berra and Gary Mackay-Steven, and they threw on Northern Ireland striker Liam Boyce. On the bench was Scotland Euro 2020 hopeful John Souttar and Czech Republic cap Zdenek Zlamal.

If they are allowed any excuses, they were missing goalkeeper Craig Gordon, defender Michael Smith and forward Steven Naismith, who between them have earned over 120 caps.

Had part-time Brora lost, their season would likely have been over. The Highland League campaign was delayed until November and halted in January, with any return looking unlikely. Instead, they have a third round tie to prepare for when Stranraer visit next weekend.

Keane's Celtic debut turns sour

Roy Keane had a day to forget on his Celtic debut
Roy Keane had a day to forget at Broadwood as Clyde stunned Celtic

It was supposed to be Roy Keane's big day. The Manchester United legend had joined boyhood heroes Celtic intent on a glorious end to his career to prove wrong manager Gordon Strachan, who he believed did not really want to sign him.

But his debut on 8 January 2006 fell flat with one of the Scottish Cup's biggest upsets as second-tier Clyde - with an average age under 21 - triumphed 2-1.

Clyde twice had the ball in the net only for the officials to cruelly rule against them before Craig Bryson headed the First Division side in front.

Celtic goalkeeper Artur Boruc then saved a penalty from Stephen O'Donnell only for Eddie Malone to stun the visitors with a volley into the top corner.

Maciej Zurawski struck late for Celtic but Clyde held on for a famous win.

Wee Gers beat the big Gers

Rangers would go on to contest a European final in 1967, but earlier that year they could not get past Second Division Berwick Rangers, and goalkeeper Jock Wallace, in the first round of the Scottish Cup.

They lost 1-0 that day with Wallace, who would go on to have two spells as manager at Ibrox, playing a blinder.

And, 35 years and seven days later, lightening came close to striking twice. In 2002 Berwick, at the time sitting bottom of the Second Division, almost repeated that result. They did earn a 0-0 draw and a bumper pay-day with a replay.

Super Caley go Balistic

Inverness Caley Thistle players celebrate at Celtic Park
Barry Wilson and Paul Sheerin were on target for Caley Thistle, with Lubomir Moravcik scoring an own goal

It was the game that gave us the never-bettered newspaper headline: 'Super Caley Go Balistic, Celtic Are Atrocious" and led to the dismissal of John Barnes, as Inverness Caledonian Thistle dumped Celtic out of the Scottish Cup in 2000.

Caley Thistle have beaten Celtic twice since then in the tournament, most recently in 2015 at Hampden on their way to claiming the trophy. But that night was seismic in comparison.

It was only their sixth season in existence. They had lost to Alloa in the Challenge Cup final, would finish sixth in the First Division and subsequently lost their following two league games after a remarkable 3-1 success at Celtic Park

Meanwhile, Barnes' side boasted the likes of Lubo Moravcik, Mark Viduka and Eyal Berkovic and England legend Ian Wright played in the second half. But it was Steve Paterson's men that prevailed.

'Congratulations on being part of the worst result in the club's history'

Former Aberdeen striker Duncan Shearer vividly recalls the day third-tier Stenhousemuir downed the Dons 2-0 in 1995.

Roy Aitken's side, fresh off a 2-0 win over Rangers, were beaten by two goals from dairy farmer Tommy Steele.

"Roy didn't come into the dressing room for five or six minutes," Shearer told BBC Scotland. "He popped his head round the door and said: 'Congratulations on being part of Aberdeen's worst result in the club's history.' There was nothing else to say."