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    Allan Maitland previews Brechin game 

    Friday, October 29, 2010 5:31:57 PM

    I’d like to offer a warm welcome to Jim Weir, Kevin McGowne, the players, directors and supporters of high flying Brechin City for today’s match. Our opponents are currently in a rich vein of form winning their last 4 games and scoring 13 goals in the process, with the goals coming from 5 different players. The fact that Rory McAllister is suspended today is obviously a bonus for us but it would be an insult to the rest of the quality players at Brechin to underestimate them as a one man team. Brechin have also had to cope with the disappointment of losing Charlie King with injury (we wish him good fortune in his recovery) and Barry Smith who has become the manager of financially stricken Dundee but the quality of their bench last Saturday against Airdrie (Byers, White, Docherty and Fusco) shows the strength in depth that Jim has at his disposal. Our games against Brechin are always close affairs and I don’t expect today to be any different.
    Our defeat at Ayr United last Saturday was a huge disappointment in many ways: 1) the fact that we inexplicably played so poorly in the first half, 2) that we didn’t capitalise on our second half performance when we dominated possession for long spells, and 3) that we lost the game to a freak goal after a deflection from a long range shot that flew over Robbo high into the net. After our great result at Airdrie we went to Ayr full of confidence with only one enforced change when Jim Lister called off with the flu. After their disappointment at Forfar, I expected Ayr to play at a high tempo and bring the game to us which they did, but I believed we could handle that and cause them enough problems at the back to force them back – for whatever reason we didn’t get to the pace of the game for the first 45 minutes and were fortunate only to be 1 goal down. However the second half was the complete opposite and we controlled the game and began to stretch their back 4 until we eventually equalised with a Kevin McDonald penalty. At that stage we could have accepted that a point was a decent result but I want everyone at the club to understand that we play to win every game. We continued to press for the winner and Ayr managed a rare break forward and scored when Scott McLaughlin shot from 25 yards and the ball deflected off Billy Gibson. Over the piece we can have no complaints about the result and it means that we need to start picking up wins to prevent Brechin and Livingston stretching their lead at the top of the league.
    Stuart Noble has returned to full training this week and I expect to have him available for next week’s game at East Fife, which will give us more options going forward.
    Finally the players have their night out tonight and I hope they have good time – they are on a fancy dress mission and have drawn lots that have resulted in Bananaman, 118 118, Susan Boyle, Superman and a fairy joining them although I am not at liberty to divulge the identity of the players. What I can say is that one player has been given the distinction of being the “gaffer” tonight and I expect him to be impeccably dressed, buying plenty of rounds for the boys and obviously well behaved – home by Match of the Day is the serious drawback but one that I know Mini can handle.
    I hope you all enjoy today’s game and that we can bring you the victory your support deserves.
    Allan Maitland
    Team Manager


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