FORFAR ATHLETIC vs STENHOUSEMUIR
The Warriors make the trip north in our final match of the season to play promotion chasing Forfar Athletic.
Stenhousemuir have had the upper hand on the Angus side this season with a draw and 2 victories. However, it’s Forfar that have had the better season and find themselves in the promotion playoffs.
For Stephen Swift’s side, it’s a chance to close an ultimately disappointing season. The boys have looked great at times, but there’s been an inconstancy that’s cost a place in the playoffs.
With the skeleton of the side already having agreed contracts for next season, the foundation has been set and the League Championship will be on everyone’s mind for next season.
This week has marked 1 year in the SPFL for gaffer Stephen Swift, and Warriors TV asked him how he thinks it’s went.
“I think when you look back through the year, it’s been a bit of a rollercoaster from when we first came in and took over the two games against Albion Rovers and Brechin. Then, after that, losing pretty much the full playing staff. But what we had to do was re-group and get a brand new team in. I think, looking back, the big thing that I’ve underestimated is how difficult it is to introduce a brand new playing squad especially with numbers like 20 new players. But, 1 thing that we have now is a nucleus, which we didn’t have last year. So I think that, although that group of players should’ve definitely finished in the playoffs, they didn’t. But what we’ve got this season is a nucleus to go and build on that we didn’t have previously, and I think that will make a difference for us, being settled going into the new season.”
Of course, this season isn’t quite done yet. Mathematically, we can’t do anything, but we still have 1 more game to go and we go. into that with the exact same attitude as we have with the majority of the games this season.
“Yep, that’s what I’ve asked of the boys. We’ve said can we see out the last game. We’ve got a lot of injuries at this time of year, and boys that aren’t being kept on maybe taking the huff. But we want to finish in a high and fingers crossed we can do it. But we know the position that we’ve finished in, it’s 5th and it’s 1 short of where we wanted to be. But we just need to take that on the chin, and I do feel that we’ve got a great nucleus here and something to build on, compared to what we had last year. If we can make sure that we get our recruitment right in the summer, which is not a massive overhaul, it’s only a sprinkling, and if we get that right, we’ll be in a really good position.”
While Swifty is looking at enhancing his squad, 1 positive step off the field is the installation of a brand new pitch at Ochilview in time for the new season. Warriors TV asked the gaffer if that would help with his summer recruitment.
“Absolutely, that’s massive. I think that when that park’s dry, it’s quite bobbly and difficult and isn’t conducive to really good football. But with the new pitch and the actual sprinkler system that we’re looking to get in, hopefully that will help the players likes of Euan O’Reilly and Adam Corbett, real ball carriers and I think the new pitch will have a massive play in next season.”
Peter Urminsky will be unavailable due to suspension and he will return to his parent club this week. Big Peter has been immense since he came to the club and surely has a bright future. We wish Peter well and look forward to tracking his progress.
Callum Yeats, Declan Hughes, Adam Corbett and James Lyon also look to miss out on the final game of the season, with a few more facing late fitness tests.
The supporter’s bus will be available and you can book your place by contacting Andy McPhate on Twitter.