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    Pitch Inspection Dumbarton 9.30am 

    Friday, November 27, 2015 1:07:10 PM

    There is a pitch inspection tomorrow at the Cheaper Insurance Direct Stadium, Dumbarton at 9.30am

    It’s always great playing in the Scottish Cup. It is the oldest cup competition in the world and is associated with so many wonderful stories over the years. Alloa Athletic have been proudly playing in this cup competition for 132 years, having made their first appearance way back in 1883. They have progressed as far as the quarter finals on three occasions in the 131 attempts so far, with the last time being 27 years ago in 1988. We are keen to give a good account of ourselves on Saturday, as cup runs always give everyone a boost. We have landed a tough draw, away to Dumbarton. We will have to be at our best to get the result we want. We have the confidence booster of having won there already this season, in what was probably our best performance of the season so far, earning a 2-0 win. With so many changes in personnel over the summer, this was the first game that I felt we had the balance and chemistry in the team right. We all believed our season would kick on from that point, but that hasn’t materialized and our form has been up and down to say the least. Unfortunately, since that game, we have had enforced changes to the starting line up pretty much every week due to injury, illness and suspensions. That doesn’t help, but that’s football. There have also been other contributory factors to our patchy form. As the manager, I have tried a few things tactically that haven’t worked. Also, both on an individual and collective basis, some of our decision making and application on the pitch has fallen short of the standards we are capable of and we have been punished for it. Again, that’s football, but we are capable of better. What we must do is learn from these mistakes, apply what we have learned and collectively improve both our performances and results. I have confidence that we have the right playing and coaching staff at the club to do that and create some more wonderful history at the club this season, whether that be a run in the Scottish Cup, or achieve a record breaking fourth season in a row in the second tier of Scottish football. We put in a strong, battling performance against Hibs on Saturday. They are the form team in Scotland right now and we pushed them for the full 90 minutes. The goal we lost was again down to poor decision making when we had the ball and in the blink of an eye, we were punished for that lapse in judgment. We were disappointed by the result, but encouraged by so many aspects of our performance. I would happily take that level of performance every week, as I would expect that to be good enough to earn the results we need this season to create history for our club. There is a lot of work for us to do in order to get the goals that we need in games, but again, I have confidence that will come for us. Last Saturday was another good day for our youth coaches, with young Scott Hynd starting the match. Scott is 18 and has the potential to do well in the game, if he continues to take on board the coaching given to him and apply what he is learning. He made a good impact for us when he came on against Falkirk and merited his start against Hibs, where he gave us pretty much everything we asked of him. He competed very well against quality opposition and we will be looking after his development carefully throughout this season. There are other young players here who could potentially break through and there is a lot of great work going on at the club behind the scenes to give these young players every chance of making the grade.

    Previous Scottish Cup Games v. Dumbarton

    Played Nine times, Alloa won 3, Drawn 2, Dumbarton won 4

    Season 2013/14 Alloa Athletic 0 Dumbarton 1

    Season 2001/02 Alloa Athletic 3 (Ian Little, Gareth Evans, Gareth Hutchison) Dumbarton 1

    Season 1991/92 Alloa Athletic 0 Dumbarton 2

    Season 1978/79 Dumbarton 1 Alloa Athletic 0

    Season 1977/78 Alloa Athletic 2 (Bobby Carberry, Billy Morrison) Dumbarton 2 Replay Dumbarton 2 Alloa Athletic 1 (Hugh McCann)

    Season 1960/61 Alloa Athletic 2 (Jimmy Docherty, Pat Foley) Dumbarton 0

    Season 1926/27 Alloa Athletic 1 (Hugh Ferguson)  Dumbarton 1

    Replay Dumbarton 0 Alloa Athletic 4 (Hugh Ferguson 3, McMillan)

    Managers Corner