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    Peterhead Preview 

    Friday, April 03, 2009 4:37:40 PM

    Today we welcome Peterhead to the “Recs” for a game that is important to both teams in terms of the play-offs although obviously for different reasons. We go into the game in the knowledge that we still require at least a couple of victories to ensure that we avoid the relegation games while our opponents are keen to maintain their place in the promotion spots. Neale Cooper must be delighted with his side’s improvement from last season and the signings of Daniel Moore, Stuart Smith and Craig Gunn have undoubtedly helped along with the usual goals from Martin Bavidge. Our previous games this season have been very close with a win apiece and a two each draw at Balmoor Stadium in our last match in January when a last minute David Ross goal denied us what would have been our first away win. With nothing between us in these games it makes you wonder why we are 15 points behind Peterhead but comparing the goals against column tells you everything you need to know – we’ve managed to lose 20 goals more in 30 games. I believe that we have improved defensively but lapses in concentration and poor decision making is still costing us dearly as shown in our recent games against both Stirling and Brechin when we lost games that should both have rendered at least a draw. I have great belief in the players at this club and believe that the experience gained this term will benefit them in future seasons – after the play-off games against Clyde we all expected the club to have a push at promotion but the faults this season have been mine by not bringing enough experience to the squad to give Brown Ferguson and David McClune the support needed when things are going against us. If we can survive this season I know the club can use the struggle as a learning experience and by that I mean myself first and foremost and then the players. The directors and I have always spoken about gradual improvement while we probably over achieved last season the opposite can be said this year. We need to find the consistency that all good sides have and that comes with experienced players helping the younger players producing better than average performances every week.
    We only have Stuart Noble now for another couple of weeks and it would be fitting if he could finish his spell with the club with the goals that his performances have merited – his ability to hold the ball and bring other players into the game has been something sorely missing this season since Joe Andrew left and the more games he plays the sharper he becomes. The injury to Brian Carrigan has put even more onus on Stuart and we now need Andy Scott, Kyle MacAulay, Dougie Wilson and young Greig Spence to start scoring more frequently.
    I would like to finish by thanking our young band of travelling supporters for their constant vocal backing against Brechin and also their appearance at the friendly against Queen of the South.
    I hope you all enjoy today’s game and wish to thank you for your continued support.
    Allan Maitland

    Managers Corner