Elgin City are the visitors to Hampden on Saturday for Mark Roberts’ side’s last home match of 2018. City currently sit fourth in the table and won the previous meeting of the sides this season at Borough Briggs back in September however there was a cautious optimism from Mark Roberts as he spoke to the club media team on the eve of the Hampden clash.
Previewing the tie Roberts said: “It’s a game we’re very much looking forward to following the disappointment of last Saturday’s call off. It’ll be another very difficult test for us against an Elgin side that have a physical presence throughout their team. Elgin will also be looking for a reaction to their defeat last week and we need to be mindful of that.
“I’ve said on a number of occasions previously that we can’t afford to go into games and not be at our best, and Saturday will be no different. It does however give us the opportunity to move above them in the table with a win, and that is an added incentive on our part.
“We always look forward to playing at Hampden and there’s an onus on us tomorrow to go out and play to our capabilities, take the game to Elgin and cause them problems. It’s vital that we do that, in particular against those teams round about us in the table, if we are to have a chance of moving up the league and into a position that matches our aspirations.
“It’s well documented that we’re not without our problems to seek at the back tomorrow and I have decisions to make with both Gerry McLauchlan and Dom McLaren suspended. It’s frustrating that we have five recognised centre backs at the club and only have one available. On the plus side Scott Gibson has returned to training, and although the next few games will be too soon for him, we’re all delighted that he is nearing a return.
“On top of the suspensions we do have a few players carrying small knocks and niggling injuries but nothing overly concerning.”
Roberts last week wrapped up a deal that sees veteran Alan Gow join until the end of the season and the gaffer seemed pleased when asked for his thoughts on that piece of business. Roberts said: “I’m delighted to get that sorted and look forward to working with Alan to get him 100% fit. We’ve saw glimpses of what he has to offer in recent weeks when he’s featured as a trialist, but I believe we won’t see the best of him until after the Christmas/New Year period as he gets towards full fitness. He’s not played a lot of football over the last two years but he’s technically gifted and will bring a much-needed wealth of experience to the squad, which can only be beneficial for those playing with him.”
The opposition: Gavin Price’s side go into the game on the back of a 4-1 defeat to league leaders Edinburgh City at Ainslie Park last Saturday. A Blair Henderson goal had Edinburgh City in 1-0 up at the break before Rabin Omar levels the scoring just after the hour mark. Allan Smith restored the home side’s lead just six minutes later before Blair Henderson grabbed another two to seal the win.
Head to head: Played 58; Queen’s Park 29; Draw 16; Elgin City 13.
Last meeting of the sides: 29/09/2018 Elgin City 2-1 Queen’s Park (League Two).
Recent form: Queen’s Park WLLLLD; Elgin City LLWLWL.
Last matches: 08/12/2018 Queen’s Park 1-1 Stirling Albion; 15/12/2018 Edinburgh City 4-1 Elgin City.
Match officials: Referee – David Lowe. Assistants – Jordan Stokoe & Robert Thomson.
Admission prices: Adults £14; Senior Citizens (65+) £5; Student/Unemployed/Children (u16) £3.
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Our next match: 29/12/2018 v Clyde at Broadwood. Kick off 3.00pm.
Other League Two matches: Albion Rovers v Clyde; Annan Athletic v Berwick Rangers; Cowdenbeath v Edinburgh City; Peterhead v Stirling Albion.