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SCHOOLCHILDREN - and adults - might have been enjoying an unexpected few days off but Stranraer's squad will report for duty tomorrow (Saturday), despite the game versus Airdrie being off.

The Blues were due to make the trip to the Excelsior Stadium but the tie was postponed on Thursday due to the cold weather sweeping across much of central Scotland.

Stevie Farrell said it had been an unusual week for the squad, who will now instead focus on next weekend's tie with Albion Rovers.

He said: "It has been a difficult week.

snow grass

"It has been a write off and I am not surprised the game is off.

"It is probably the right decision when you consider the safety of everybody - the players, the fans, the football clubs in general.

"We will be training tomorrow though.

"We have got an indoor facility and we will be able to get the football down and play.

"It is an indoor Astroturf and we have pulled in a couple of favours to get it."

The cold weather, which has resulted in a number of schools and businesses throughout much of the Central Belt being closed, meant the Blues were unable to train during the week.

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On that basis, Farrell was glad to see the game called off as they had been unable to prepare in their usual manner.

He said: "Football players, managers and coaches - we just want to keep playing football.

"You work all week and Friday night - knowing it's off is depressing.

"Players don't want to train on a Saturday - it's not natural.

"Saturday is game day."

The week off will, hopefully, benefit at least one man: David Barron.

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The defender limped off against Arbroath but received treatment this week, with Farrell hopeful he could be back within a fortnight.

Unfortunately, there has been little progress with Angus Beith, with the manager unsure when he would be able to return to the Stranraer lineup.

The postponement comes at an unfortunate time for the Blues, who were hoping to build on an impressive 1-0 win over fourth placed Alloa Athletic.

Ross Lyon's first senior goal was the difference on the day, with the hosts standing up to Alloa's pressure after the break.

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Farrell said his team had dominated Alloa before the break and defended well in the second half.

Suggestions were made after the full time whistle about the Blues wasting time to see out the game but the Stair Park boss dismissed that.

He said: "It's called managing the game.

"We spoke about it at half time and we knew Alloa would have a reaction.

"We needed to manage the game and we did that fantastically well."

The season now enters the final quarter, with the Blues six points - and two places - better off than they were at the same time last season.

All of that comes after the well documented problems over the festive period, where a number of first team regulars left the club.

Farrell was "delighted" with the progress the club was making and was keen to see that continue.

He said: "Since Christmas, I have been delighted with the players.

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"It has been a bit of a rollercoaster, with peaks and troughs.

"Saturday was a big, big game for a number of reasons.

"We were coming off three defeats and were up against a good side, who were in good form.

"If we are going to have any aspirations of hanging onto their coat tails, we had to pick up a win and to do that in those circumstances was pleasing."

Photos: Stranraer FC, Bill McCandlish.

SPFL 3L1 6474

1 Arbroath 21 52
2 Raith Rovers 21 39
3 East Fife 21 35
4 Forfar Athletic 21 33
5 Airdrieonians 21 30
6 Montrose 21 28
7 Stranraer 20 23
8 Dumbarton 21
9 Brechin City 20 19
10 Stenhousemuir 21 16


2018/19 Squad

1 - Max Currie (GK)
2 - Daniel Higgins (DEF)

3 - Chris McGowan (DEF)
4 - Andy McDonald (DEF)
5 - David Brownlie (DEF)
6 - Connor McManus (MID)
7 - Mark Lamont (MID)
8 - Kyle Turner (MID)
11 - Grant Anderson (M/S)
12 - Ian Smith (MID)

13 - Lyle Avci (GK)
14 - Cameron Elliott (MID)
17 - David Smith (D/M)
18 - Innes Cameron (STR)
20 - PJ Crossan (STR)

22 - Jamie Hamill (DEF)
23 - Adam Cummins (DEF)
24 - Conor O'Keefe (MID)