Little looking for ‘desire and application’

Berwick Rangers v East Stirling
Berwick Rangers v East Stirling

BERWICK manager Ian Little is hoping that his side can take confidence from their recent matches into their away game against Montrose this weekend.

After a slow start to their league campaign, Berwick got the ball rolling with a battling 1-1 draw against Rangers at Shielfield. They then beat East Stirling 3-0 to record their first competitive win of the season, and then on Friday they beat a Newcastle XI 2-1 in a hastily arranged friendly.

Little’s side fell behind in the first half, but came back to win with goals from Fraser McLaren and Lee Currie.

Now the Berwick boss is hoping that his players can take the confidence they have gained from those three results into the match at Links Park.

It’s another ‘plastic’ pitch, a surface Rangers have fared on reasonably well over the past few seasons, and with Montrose currently languishing in ninth position in the table, stuill seeking their first win of the campaign, the Borderers will travel north confident that they can take something from the match.

“It’s still early in the season and I’m not really looking at Montrose’s position,” said Little. “We just have to concentrate on what we are doing, and try to do everything we can do to the best of our abilities.

“The plastic pitches have been good to us, but I honestly think they suit us as we are a team who like to get the ball down and play, and you can do that on that sort of surface.”

Little said it was good to get a run out against Newcastle in what would otherwise have been a blank weekend caused by the international fixtures.

“We are extremely grateful to Newcastle for coming up at short notice. It was a good workout for the lads and I know they enjoyed it.”

Defender Dene Droudge limped off midway through the first half but Little says it was ‘nothing serious.’

“I just think he had done too much too soon, and we will see how he gets on in training this week, but I don’t think there will be any problem with him for Saturday.”

Berwick also gave a run-out to Andy McLean, who has been absent from first team action over the past few weeks, whilst long-term hamstring injury victim Stuart Noble came off the bench and got in half an hour’s play.

“It was nice to see Stuart back in action,” said Little, “but I think he needs a bit more match time, probably with the reserves, before getting back into the first time on a regular basis.”

Little said he thought his side had been playing well since pre-season, but didn’t have the luck in the early cup and league matches.

“The Annan defeat was an eye opener for us,” he said. “We were 2-0 up in that game and lost 3-2, and I had to ask myself if I could have done anything differently.But we got a lift from the Rangers game and since then things have been going well.

“I just want the players to have the same desire and application and carry it on for the rest of the season. We could add one or two new faces to the squad but at the moment I am quite happy with the players I have got and the way things have been going.”