The Warriors welcome Annan Athletic to Ochilview for the first of 3 consecutive home matches, with second placed Stirling Albion visiting next and then a break from League Two as we welcome East Fife in the 2nd Round of the Scottish Cup.
Swifty takes his team into this match being one of the most in-form teams in Scottish football with 5 matches without defeat scoring 14 and conceding 8 in the process.
The first meeting between the sides ended up in a disappointing loss in Annan. The website caught up with Swifty after training on Thursday to ask if that places a little bit of fire in the belly in an attempt to right those wrongs back in August.
“I think we’re in a better place now, having said that though, I think Annan will be hurting from Saturday. Obviously we’ve watched that game and Elgin really caused them problems with Kane Hester who’s flying at the moment. They really had a bad and they’ll be looking to make their wrongs right in terms of coming here and bouncing back. They’ve not had the best start, but we know they’re one of the teams that will be up there and they finished 2nd in the league last year. So they’ve got tools that can hurt you, but we’re also in a good place in terms of being able to hurt teams as well. So I think it will be a really interesting game. Hopefully we can continue doing the things that we’ve been doing well and if we do that, we’ve got every chance of coming away with 3 points.”
We’ve now got 8 players in the team that have found the net this season, and we asked how important it is that we’re not solely relying on 1 player finding their goal scoring form.
“Everybody is chipping in. We’re working hard on set plays and the patterns of play and the support play, in terms of Broony and Euan. We set up slightly different last week in terms of making Euan more of a goal threat and further up the pitch, so that all worked a treat. But we know that sometimes these things don’t work, so we’ll be prepared if things don’t go to plan and we’ve got a good enough squad to change things as well. But, as you say, everything is going well in terms of people chipping in with goals”
It’s important to have goals and ambitions in football, and Euan O’Reilly has certainly played his way back into the squad with an impressive goals return. We asked the gaffer about goals and targets, and how he feels Euan has been performing against his own targets.
“If you go into my office, you’ll see that we have goals up on the wall for everyone. And Euan was a big one, we started that process last season when we asked him what he thought of his goal return and he knew it wasn’t good enough. We worked with him on 1 on 1s and we’re trying to get him in more dangerous areas and, to be fair to him, he’s really responded to it. He’s got that hunger for goals. It’s the hardest part of the game, scoring goals, but he’s doing well at the minute and hopefully it’s going to continue.”
Dan Higgins remains the only injury doubt for the weekend and before we let Swifty go, we asked how the squad was looking.
“It’s a great squad, it’s maybe not the most in-depth in terms of numbers, but quality wise, we’re really delighted. But if anyone goes out then there’s more than an adequate replacement to step in and fill their boots.”
We also spoke to Euan O’Reilly this week as the midfielder has worked hard to gain his way back into the starting 11 and how he feels about the gaffer setting him targets.
“I’m not entirely sure. I’ve put more onus on myself to get into better positions this season. I think a lot of that is confidence. I feel like I’m getting those chances. At the start of the season, I spoke with the management team and the gaffer and they’ve set me some targets which I think are achievable. So, yea, it’s looking good.”
“I’ve never really set myself much targets in my career. And I think, having done that this season, it’s shown that it’s given me something to think about, to focus on and to work towards”
With us losing our previous match away to Annan, we asked Euan how important it was to get a victory back.
“Especially at home, with the crowd behind us, we can go out early, get on the front foot and give ourselves a good chance to get the 3 points and keep the run going”
Finally, we asked Euan about the squad additions last week and how they’ve been since they’ve come in.
“Both guys have looked really good. Liam came in last Saturday and we’ve trained with Ross for a few weeks, so both of those guys are looking really good.”
Match Entry: Both home and away fans can enter via pay at the gate [cash] or you can purchase your ticket in advance by using Fanbase. Adult admission costing £14, concessions £9 and under 16’s just £5.
Getting Here: Click here for details of how to get to Ochilview by car or train.
Season Card Holders: Season Tickets are valid for this match, the Season Ticket number will be displayed at the turnstiles.
The Pie Hut: Food and drinks will be available to be purchased once again from the Pie Hut.
The Wee Bar: The Wee Bar is open from 12pm with all fans welcome.
Ochilview Matchday Guide: You can read our Matchday Guide here and ensure that you have everything that you need for your visit to the ground.
Referee: Alastair Grieve
Assistants: Brian Christie & Blair Fraser
Full name Annan Athletic Football Club
Nickname(s) Black and Golds, Galabankies
Founded 1942; 80 years ago
Ground Galabank, Annan
Capacity 2,504 (500 seated)
Chairman Philip Jones
Manager Peter Murphy
2021–22 Scottish League Two, 3rd of 10
Last 10 Matches
|1/10/22||Away||League Two||Elgin City||L||1-5|
|23/9/22||Home||Challenge Cup||Kelty Hearts||L||1-2|
|17/9/22||Home||League Two||East Fife||D||2-2|
|3/9/22||Home||League Two||Forfar Athletic||W||2-1|
|27/8/22||Away||League Two||Albion Rovers||D||2-2|
|23/8/22||Away||Challenge Cup||East Kilbride||W||1-1|
|20/8/22||Home||League Two||Stirling Albion||L||1-2|
|Name||Goals||Assists||Played||Goals per 90||Mins per Goal||Total Shots||Goal Conversion||Shot Accuracy|
The statistics shown for each player include any goals they may have scored in the following competitions in the current season: Scottish League Cup, Scottish League Two
Last 10 Meetings
ON THIS DAY – 8 OCTOBER
|1994||Queen of the South||Division Two||Home||D||0-0|
|1988||Queens Park||Division Two||Home||D||0-0|
|1977||East Stirlingshire||Division Two||Home||W||4-1|
|1955||Forfar Athletic||Division Two||Away||W||1-0|
|1949||Queens Park||Division Two||Home||D||2-2|
|1927||Kings Park||Division Two||Home||W||3-2|
Albion Rovers vs Bonnyrigg Rose
Forfar Athletic vs East Fife
Stenhousemuir vs Annan Athletic
Stirling Albion vs Dumbarton
Stranraer vs Elgin City