L05 Airdrieonians W

STEVIE Farrell has challenged his side to be at their “very best” if they are to take anything from Airdrie tomorrow (Saturday).

The Blues travel to The Penny Car Stadium buoyed by four points from a possible six and back to back clean sheets.

However, Farrell stressed there is no room for complacency or overconfidence as they look to continue that run.

He said: “Airdrie have spent some money and certainly gone all out to sign real experience and real know how in the squad this year.

“They have really brought in well in terms of recruitment of players and it is a completely revamped squad from last year.

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“They have vast experience in League One ad we know that through losing our captain from last year, Scott Robertson, to them.

“They have recruited vastly in the summer and brought in real experience.

“We are expecting a really tough game tomorrow and we are away from home and will need to be at our very best to get something from the game.”

Meanwhile, there is guaranteed to be at least one change to Farrell’s starting line up.

Cameron Elliott, who played up front last weekend against Montrose, is missing, as is Isaac Layne.

The manager said: “I think up front is going to be Cameron’s best position.

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“I thought Angus Beith was more of an offensive player than defensive when he joined us and I can see Cameron proving to be more of a forward player than wide player.

“He is working very, very hard but the problem is he is away on a family wedding tomorrow.”

Meanwhile, Layne is going for a second opinion on the knee injury which has interrupted his start in a Stranraer shirt.

The frontman last played against Forfar a fortnight ago but the Blues face a wait to find out when he will be back on the pitch.

Promisingly, Kyle Turner has shaken off a knock while Mark Lamont could return to the bench having missed the last game.

The 2-0 victory over Montrose, with goals from David Brownlie and Grant Anderson, was Stranraer’s first three points of the campaign.

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Those first half strikes had the Blues on top, with an impressive defensive showing when required after the break.

The manager added: “The form has been good both defensively and last week we got two good goals from set pieces as well, which was pleasing.

“Individual performances and collective performances have been good.

“It is good but we are not getting carried away.”

Last meeting
Airdrieonians 2-1 Stranraer
Saturday 13 March 2018

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DARYL Duffy ensured Airdrie got three points after both sides scored first half penalties.

The Blues had a perfect start with a penalty after just four minutes. Stephen Okoh was brought down in the box and Kyle Turner slotted into the bottom right corner.

However, the lead lasted just seven minutes with the Diamonds awarded a spot kick of their own. Ryan Conroy made no mistake from 12 yards.

The Blues had plenty of chances with Okoh, Turner, Grant Anderson and Ryan Thomson all coming close. Ultimately, the winner would come at the other end though. Duffy got on the end of a long ball and rifled past Max Currie to make it 2-1.

Airdrieonians: Muir, O’Neil, MacDonald, Higgins, Brownlie, Cairns, Stewart (Hastie 65), Conroy (Watt 79), Fry, Duffy, Carrick (McGregor 89).
Not used: Edwards, Brown, Russell and Ferguson.

Stranraer: Currie, Robertson, Neill, McGowan, Hamill, Hawkshaw (Lyon 75), Anderson, Turner, Thomson (Agnew 26), Dykes (Elliott 81), Okoh.
Not used: Woods, Scott, Gray and McLaren.
 
Last five meetings

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Airdrieonians 2 Stranraer 1 (Conroy (P) and Duffy; Turner (P)) at Excelsior Stadium on March 13, 2018
Stranraer 3 Airdrieonians 2 (Okoh x2 and Beith; Carrick and Furtado) at Stair Park on January 13, 2018
Airdrieonians 2 Stranraer 0 (Conroy x2) at Excelsior Stadium on November 11, 2017
Stranraer 3 Airdrieonians 1 (Anderson x2 and Agnew (P); Furtado) at Stair Park on September 9, 2017
Airdrieonians 3 Stranraer 1 (Russell x2 and Ryan (P); Robertson) at Excelsior Stadium on July 18, 2017

Stranraer's last five games

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WIN v Montrose (H): 2-0 (Brownlie and Anderson)
DRAW v Forfar Athletic (A): 0-0
LOSS v Partick Thistle (H): 0-5
LOSS v Arbroath (A): 3-1 (Donnelly)
DRAW v Raith Rovers (H): 1-1 (Anderson)

Airdrieonians' last five games

LOSS v Raith Rovers (H): 3-4 (Vitoria x2 and Carrick)
WIN v Stenhousemuir (A): 1-2 (Conroy x2)
WIN v Berwick Rangers (A): 0-3 (Conroy, Carrick and McIntosh (P))
LOSS v Montrose (H): 0-1
WIN v Forfar Athletic (A): 1-3 (Conroy, McIntosh and Vitoria)

Last time out

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Stranraer lineup v Montrose: Currie, McDonald, Brownlie, D Smith, Hamill, Cummins, McManus, Turner (I Smith 87), Donnelly (Ashmore 79), Anderson, Elliott (Diver 70).
Not used: McGowan, Lidington and Avci.

Airdrieonians lineup v Raith Rovers: Hutton, MacDonald, Crighton (Edwards 27), Page, Cairns, Stewart, Gallagher (Millar 80), Conroy, McIntosh, Carrick (Russell 86), Vitoria.
Not used: McIntosh, Wilkie and MacKenzie.

Referee

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TWICE Greg Aitken took charge of a game involving Stranraer last season and twice it was away from home.

The Blues lost to Dumbarton but the most recent meeting was the memorable 3-2 win in Arbroath. Omar Kader and Gavin Swankie had the hosts 2-0 up before Stephen Okoh, Grant Anderson and Scott Agnew reversed the scoreline in the second half.

The referee also visited Airdrie once last season, with the Diamonds welcoming East Fife. On that occasion, the visitors took all three points – with former Blue Mark Docherty scoring the only goal from the penalty spot.

Photos: Stranraer FC, Bill McCandlish

The new Stranraer FC 2018/19 home, away and 3rd kits are now available to purchase from the Club Shop at Stair Park.

You can also order yours online:

3rd kit w

SPFL 3L1 6474

POS
TEAM PLD
PTS
1 Arbroath 17 45
2 Raith Rovers 17 32
3 East Fife 17 26
4 Forfar Athletic 17 24
5 Montrose 17 21
6 Airdrieonians 17 20
7 Stranraer 16 20
8 Dumbarton 17
18
9 Brechin City 16 16
10 Stenhousemuir 17 15


Fixtures

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)
10 - Luke Donnelly (STR)
11 - Grant Anderson (M/S)
12 - Ian Smith (MID)

13 - Lyle Avci (GK)
14 - Cameron Elliott (MID)
16 - Max Ashmore (MID)
17 - David Smith (D/M)
18 - Innes Cameron (STR)
19 - Ciaran Diver (STR)
20 - PJ Crossan (STR)

22 - Jamie Hamill (DEF)
23 - Adam Cummins (DEF)