Scottish Cup weekend preview: The Highland Football League view


scottishcup-logoIt’s been a busy week on the Highland League market with a couple of transfer deals completed and also a new manager arriving into the scene.

Buckie Thistle manager Gary Hake this week lost the services of goalkeeper Kevin Main to Turriff United for an undisclosed fee. Main clearly documented back in September that he would never play for the club again after being given a £50 fine for attending a wedding despite having the gaffers permission.

This was the end of an 11 year stint with the Victoria Park men and will be missed among the Jags fans. Main played his part in the Jags winning back to back league titles and was also an inspirational character along the years including helping Buckie to a shock 2-1 away to Annan Athletic, Just a few seasons back with the former Lossiemouth keeper having a string of top saves to ensure victory.

Hake has went to the Juniors in search of his replacement and has now secured former Bridge Of Don Thistle goalie Andy Burr who managed to get Main’s replacement from an unexpected source.

Andy has already played in 2 trialist games for the Jags featuring in a 4-0 win over Deveronvale before a 4-1 defeat against champions Brora Rangers last weekend.

Buckie striker Craig McMillan has been sent out to Rothes on loan until the end of the season.

Away from the Jags now and it’s along the A98 at Deveronvale and they have appointed ex Nairn County assistant manager Ally MacLeod as their new manager replacing Charlie Charlesworth who departed three weeks ago citing work and family committments behind his exit. MacLeod’s 1st match will be away to Formartine United on the 11th October.

It’s the Scottish Cup 2nd round tomorrow with eight Highland League sides still in the competition.

Turriff United are at home to Clyde and Ross Jack has said that he faces a selection dilemma ahead of the game “We have two brilliant goalkeepers to fight it out for the number one jersey.”

Formartine United travel over the border to face Berwick Rangers. It’s the 1st time that Formartine will face a Scottish League side since their eye-catching run in the Challenge Cup last campaign when they beat East Stirling and Elgin City before eventually getting knocked out by Annan Athletic.

Inverurie Locos welcome Ayrshire outfit Hurlford United to Harlaw Park. Hurlford hit fellow Highland League side Clach for 7 in the 1st round and Locos will be hoping that it doesn’t happen this time around.

It will only be a 11 mile drive along the A96 for Forres Mechanics when they go to Elgin City. The 2 teams played in the North Of Scotland Cup which Elgin came out on top in however City manager Barry Wilson is expecting Forres to be a tough nut to crack.

Champions Brora Rangers entertain Aberdeen Junior side Banks O’Dee at Dudgeon Park in a game which Brora will be red-hot favourites however Banks O’Dee have already had a few cup scalps this season beating Rothes and Huntly respectively.

Cove Rangers and Annan Athletic meet at Allan Park. Cove are on an impressive run of late and will fancy their chances of home advantage tomorrow.

It’s an all Highland League tie at Station Park when Nairn County host Huntly. County manager Les Fridge is not concerned that his side are playing a fellow Highland League outfit.


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