Alloa Athletic v Falkirk

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The Wasps welcomed neighbours Falkirk as their first foots for the New Year but disappointingly the home side failed to take any points from a game which on commitment and determination they might have hoped to share the spoils, but in the end it was the Falkirk talisman, John Baird who was on hand to show the difference of having a proven goalscorer in their team. The manager will be looking at the January transfer window to try and bring in more strength and options in attack but other clubs will be looking to do the same as clubs look to strengthen for the second half of the season. Falkirk ground out a victory in a game of very few clear cut chances, Robbie Crawford came closest to scoring for “The Wasps” but in poor conditions it was not game for the football purists with Scott McKenna, making his Alloa debut on loan from Aberdeen putting on a “Man of the Match” performance


jack ross after falkirk new year derby

Today we were playing a team who are on a terrific run and are rightly been seen as promotion contenders, we matched them for long periods in the game, I don’t think the game had huge amounts of quality in it there were few chances at both ends, Andy McNeil had only one save other than the one that leads to the goal and Danny Rogers didn’t have many saves to make either but I thought the level of commitment from the players was tremendous, their desire, you could see that in the final fifteen minutes of the game was evident, so that’s encouraging and we will look to stay as positive as we can, it is difficult because the players have taken a lot of blows at the moment, but the group of players and reaction I have had from them has been first class.

First and foremost when you come in, I only have two nights a week to work with the players so it’s about trying to get them onside as positive as we can be to begin with and buy in the way I want to do things and I think they are doing that, there has been a really good reaction in the training and I try to speak to them individually which is difficult with the time you have got but I have been delighted with them and today I genuinely feel for them, people think managers want results for themselves but it doesn’t bother me, I want the players to get their rewards at times because I think the commitment they showed today we could easily have taken something from this game.

I genuinely had no qualms about playing Scott McKenna, he is somebody I have watched over the past couple of years, I had seen him play for Scotland Under 19’s and watched him in a few games since, I know that the type of player he is he could handle this fine, it took him a little while at the start of the game because he was playing against two very good strikers in Lee Miller & John Baird, they are experienced and know the game and are a handful but he adjusted really well, he tired at the end but that is natural as well it is a step up in pace to what he has playing, but delighted with him and if he produces performances like that in the games he is here he will do well.

We still have two loan options left this season, so it is a market we will continue to look at again, I think there is no an abundance of players going about, we will continue to try especially in the attacking areas, it’s evident that we don’t have a huge amount of options, I only had one fit striker today in Michael Duffy, so I have been tirelessly trying and found it difficult so far. When I came here we had only taken one point from twenty seven in nine home games so we looked at what could we do to help address that, when we were playing against full time teams with good quality they prefer the pitches with big spaces so we thought it might help us to narrow the pitch. Today it didn’t change the end result but it did keep us in the game throughout, so it’s an educated gamble, we could happily just let the season peterout or look to change, we asked the question and were told it was ok, if it works it works but we need to try things.

I think Robbie Crawford will stay with the club, Michael Duffy needs to consider his option and Michael Doyle we are hoping to stay, the good thing for these players is they are experiencing first team football every week although they still have the desire to go and make it at their parent club and we will be having conversations to see where they stand, Michael Duffy, I would love him to stay, I’ve been really pleased with him so far it’s been really difficult for him as a young player because at times he has been asked to play with little support and I don’t believe he has had his rewards because at times with a little fortune he could have scored goals, I still believe he could still score six to ten goals this season and hopefully that will be with us.


Indodrill Stadium
Indodrill Stadium, Alloa