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SPFL League One weekend preview: 22nd – 23rd March 2014

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Once the inevitable happened – Rangers won the league – we are able to switch to the playoffs at the top and at the bottom. It is an intriguing set of contests for 4th and 9th and some games today are vital in these battles.

Match of the Day

Stranraer v Stenhousemuir

The home side have hit the skids over the last few weeks and there are plenty who think this is because of the lack of depth in their squad. It may be concerning for Stephen Aitken’s side – though he is not hitting the panic button – but for us it makes the whole situation mid table much more fascinating. Their loss by a single goal last weekend to Forfar Athletic is in marked contrast to the Warriors who beat Brechin City 4-2. Stenhousemuir’s new manager – Scott Booth – has next season in his sights but a wee opportunity to test his team in the playoffs this year would suit just dandy. I think Stranraer are going to slide – just how far may well be gathered from today’s game. If they can recover and get the win they should stay in the top 4 but if Stenhousemuir do win, as I suspect they will, then it’s a difficult few weeks for Stranraer’s faithful.

Brechin City v Rangers has the Glebe Park side open for business on Sunday as Rangers come visiting. The Hedgemen will have to recover from their 4-2 loss at Ochilview whilst Rangers beat Dunfermline and then Albion Rovers in the cup both by 2-0. I think that Rangers shall manage the season undefeated and therefore this should be a simple exercise in stretching their unbeaten run. I do reckon, though, that Brechin might just sneak a point. Dunfermline Athletic v East Fife has the home side off the back of a loss at Ibrox whilst their visitors were spanked 5-0 at home to Ayr United. I reckon that the Pars have enough to maintain their grip on 2nd though they do have a tendency to stumble when looking for consistency… Just as well they lost last weekend then…

Ayr United v Arbroath sees 4th placed Ayr seeking to win again though they would probably settle for less than their 5-0 wins against East Fife and Stranraer over the last 2 weeks. The Red Lichties have a loss to Airdrie last weekend from which to recover and they had been getting better but are now in last spot. I think Ayr will have enough though Paul Sheerin’s side may make more of a contest of it than either the Fifers or Stranraer did. Airdrieonians v Forfar Athletic has Airdrie off the back of another win and another step closer to safety last weekend against fellow strugglers Arbroath. The Loons are following up from a single goal win too – against Stranraer. This, for me has all the hallmarks of an honourable draw.

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About Author

A lifelong supporter, since seeing Alex Ferguson play for them, of Ayr United he now contributes here, at KickTalk and Ringside Reports for things sporty. He is also a theatrical type and an educationalist. As an Ayr fan he clearly can explain the inexplicable, place fanatical faith in the most fantastic of dreams and deal with dark periods of depression and disappointment. Perfect as a teacher..

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