L36 Airdrieonians W

FOUR of Stranraer’s dominant reserve team will be involved with Stevie Farrell’s first team tomorrow (Saturday).

The Blues bring the curtain down on another season at Stair Park by welcoming Airdrieonians.

Farrell will look for reinforcements from the South of Scotland team, which has not tasted defeat in the league this campaign, with no fewer than seven players unavailable.

Speaking about the team news, the manager said: “Bill McCandlish, the groundsman and yourself are all playing.

“We’ve got no team – we have got seven missing tomorrow.

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“We have got the three long-terms (Adam Cummins, Christopher McGowan and Ian Smith), Joao Victoria cannot play against Airdrie, I’ve got PJ Crossan missing because Celtic have recalled him because they have got a big game on Monday, David Brownlie is injured and Kyle Turner who is suspended.

“The bench is going to be full of the reserves.

“There is going to be four reserve players involved tomorrow.”

Alistair McColm, Robbie Murray, Jonny Baxter and one more will all make the step up from the South of Scotland squad for the match.

McColm made his debut in the last home game against Brechin, while Robbie Murray has been named on the bench in recent weeks.

Baxter played once last season, stepping off the bench against Raith Rovers.

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Farrell felt it would be “a great experience” for the quartet and said: “There are four involved tomorrow and it is a great experience for them just to be about the environment.

“Working with first team players and being about first team players and going to places like Raith Rovers and Dumbarton and sampling it is great for them.

“Tomorrow, three, at least, of them will get some game time.”

The Blues go into the game following a 2-1 defeat to Dumbarton last time out.

Jim Duffy’s men found the net twice in the first half before Stranraer fought back with an Innes Cameron header.

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Stranraer pushed for a leveller but could not find the goal to give them a point.

Farrell said: “I thought we actually started the game quickly.

“It was a naivety, Kyle Turner lost the ball in an area of the pitch where Kyle does not usually lose the ball.

“Then, we failed to defend.

“I think they got a bit of luck in their first goal and that set us back.

“I thought we started the game relatively well and I thought we played some decent football.

“Then, they had a wee spell just after they scored the goal and got their second goal very quickly.

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“That did set us back a wee but in the second half I thought we took the game to them.

“I thought we played with a freedom, scored the goal and were unlucky not to get a result.”

Now, attention turns to the Diamonds, who Stranraer have not managed to take a single point from this term.

The Blues lost 2-1 at Stair Park in November, when former Stranraer man Grant Gallagher found the target.

Farrell was keen to end the season on a high against Ian Murray’s men.

He said: “It is always nice to win the last game of the season.

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“In any season that is the case, no matter where you are in the league.

“It would be nice to do that and go into the summer with that win under your belt.

“We did it last year against East Fife and hopefully we can do it this year.

“We’ve got the player of the year awards and a win gives a better atmosphere in the evening.

“Players have got a smile on their face, fans have got a smile on their face and it makes for a better night.”

Last meeting
Airdrieonians 3-0 Stranraer
29 December 2018

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STRANRAER closed out 2018 with defeat to Airdrie, who made it three wins from three meetings with the Stair Park side.

The Blues had a dreadful start when Andy McDonald could only partially block Scott Stewart’s cross. The ball came back to Leighton McIntosh and he cut inside before firing past Max Currie.

Just before half time that advantage was doubled. Again, Stewart was involved as his shot was blocked by Currie’s legs. The ball again fell into the path of McIntosh and he made no mistake.

Stranraer attempted to get back into the tie, with Innes Cameron firing wide before Kyle Turner’s drive was tipped onto the post by Ben McKenzie.

Finally, Airdrie wrapped up the contest when substitute Darryl Duffy scoring from 20 yards.

Airdrieonians: MacKenzie, O’Neil, MacDonald, Crighton, Edwards, Millar, Gallagher, Stewart (Robertson 76), Wilkie (Duffy 68), Carrick (Cairns 85), McIntosh.
Not used: McNeil, Page, Victoria and Russell.

Stranraer: Currie, Higgins, McGowan (Diver 79), McDonald, Hamill, McManus, Turner, Anderson, Cameron, Lamont, Crossan (Donnelly 62).
Not used: Brownlie, D Smith, Ashmore, I Smith and Avci.

Last five meetings

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Airdrieonians 3 Stranraer 0 (McIntosh x2 and Duffy) at The Penny Cars Stadium on December 29, 2018
Stranraer 1 Airdrieonians 2 (Turner; Gallagher and Wilkie) at Stair Park on November 10, 2018
Airdrieonians 2 Stranraer 0 (McIntosh and Victoria) at The Penny Cars Stadium on September 1, 2018
Airdrieonians 2 Stranraer 1 (Conroy (P) and Duffy; Turner (P)) at The Penny Cars Stadium on March 13, 2018
Stranraer 3 Airdrieonians 2 (Okoh x2 and Beith; Carrick and Furtado) at Stair Park on January 13, 2018

Last five games

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LOSS v Dumbarton (A): 2-1 (Cameron)
WIN v Brechin City (H): 3-0 (Lamont, McCann and Elliott)
WIN v Raith Rovers (H): 2-3 (Turner, Cameron and Victoria)
WIN v Forfar Athletic (H): 2-1 (Victoria and McManus)
LOSS v Montrose (A): 3-1 (McDonald)


WIN v Arbroath (H): 3-0 (L McIntosh x2 and S McIntosh)
LOSS v Montrose (A): 2-1 (L McIntosh)
LOSS v Stenhousemuir (H): 0-1
DRAW v East Fife (H): 0-0
DRAW v Dumbarton (A): 3-3 (Stewart x2 and Duffy)

Last time out

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Stranraer lineup v Dumbarton: Currie, McDonald, D Smith, Hamill, McManus, Turner, McCann, Elliott (Anderson 74), Cameron, Lamont, Victoria (Crossan 61).
Not used: Murray, McColm, O’Keefe and Avci.

Airdrieonians lineup v Arbroath: Hutton, Page, MacDonald, Crighton, Cairns (S McIntosh 87), Edwards, Millar, Stewart, Hawkshaw (Conroy 83), Glass, L McIntosh.
Not used: Wilkie and McNeil.

Gavin Duncan

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GAVIN Duncan took charge of two Stranraer games last season, the most recent being at Hampden Park.

Angus Beith put the Blues in front before future Stranraer signing Luke Donnelly levelled for Queen's Park. Kyle Turner scored in stoppage time but another future Blue, Adam Cummins, levelled from the penalty spot.

Mr Duncan also took charge of a cup game against Airdrie at the beginning of the season, where Stranraer lost 3-1 and finished with nine men. Cameron Russell scored before Cameron Belford was sent off. Russell added another, with Andy Ryan also finding the net. Scott Robertson, now with Airdrie scored, before David Barron was sent off.

In fact, you need to go all the way back to February 2017 for the referee’s last time in the middle at Stair Park. The hosts emerged victorious on that occasion, with Craig Malcolm scoring twice and Steven Bell finding the net against Albion Rovers in Stevie Farrell’s first home game in charge.

The referee took charge of Airdrie’s defeat to Raith Rovers last March. Lewis Vaughan and Jason Thomson had the Kirkcaldy side two goals up before the break. Scott Stewart pulled one back before former Stranraer man Luke Watt was sent off at the very end.

You need to go back to November 2017 for the last Airdrie game on the road that Mr Duncan was in the middle for. That was at Bayview Stadium and Stewart was again on target. Unfortunately for the Diamonds, it was downhill from then on with Chris Duggan, Mark Lamont, Chris Kane and Greg Hurst all on target, with Kyle Wilkie scoring a double.

Photos: Stranraer FC, Bill McCandlish
Finally, a huge thank you to our supporters far and wide who have backed the Blues throughout 2018/19!

Remember to follow us on Twitter, Facebook and right here on stranraerfc.org for all the latest signing news during the summer break.

League table

1 Albion Rovers 0 0
2 Annan Athletic 0 0
3 Brechin City 0 0
4 Cowdenbeath 0 0
5 Edinburgh City 0 0
6 Elgin City 0 0
7 Queen's Park 0 0
8 Stenhousemuir 0 0
9 Stirling Albion 0 0
10 Stranraer 0 0

Squad 2020/21

Ayrton Sonkur (DEF, Annan), Jamie Walker (GK, Kilmarnock), Thomas Orr (STR, BSC Glasgow), Kieran Millar (MID, Airdrieonians), Ruari Paton (STR, East Kilbride), Darryl Duffy (STR, Stirling Albion), Greg Fleming (GK, Peterhead), Sean Burns (DEF, Stenhousemuir)

RETURNING: Adam Cummins (DEF), Jamie Hamill (DEF/MID), Grant Gallagher (MID), Scott Robertson (DEF), Cameron Elliott (MID/STR), Connor McManus (MID), James Hilton (MID), Lewis McIntyre (DEF), Joao Victoria (MID/STR), Andy Stirling (MID)

OUT: Ryan Thomson (Darvel), Max Currie (Airdrieonians), Dale Burgess (Beith), Jordan Allan (Darvel), Lee Hamilton (Edinburgh City), David Smith, Denny Johnstone (loan ended), Carlo Pignatiello (loan ended), Ryan Stevenson

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