With games spread from the weekend and then weekday fixtures this league managed to attract some attention in terms of more than reference to how badly things are going for Barry Ferguson!
On Saturday Queen’s Park secured 2nd top spot with a 2-0 win over Clyde thanks to goals from Shaun Rooney and Shaun Fraser. East Stirlingshire and East Fife also provided two goals but this time it was one apiece as Allan Walker and David Greenhill scored.
Tuesday night I had predicted would be difficult to call and so it proved. Annan Athletic beat Albion Rovers 2-1 with Josh Todd and David Hopkirk scoring for the home side and Scott Chaplain for the visitors. Elgin City performed well for new boss, Jim Weir, and held league leaders, Arbroath to a 1-1 draw; Simon Murray and Craig Gunn got the goals. Montrose got back on their feet with a 2-1 victory against Berwick Rangers as Andy Russell got the Borderer’s goals whilst Bryan Deasley and Paul Watson score for their visitors.
It means that the league has split into three. The first section sees the title being fought out between Arbroath (31), Queen’s Park (28) and Albion Rovers (27). All three could reasonably make claim to having the best chance of taking the title. All three have had mixed runs at times but I still have a soft spot for the Red Lichties this year.
There is already a ten point gap between third and fourth. There is then a two point gap between fourth and ninth! We have East Fife (17), Annan Athletic (17), Montrose (17), Berwick Rangers (16), East Stirlingshire (16) and Clyde (15). All six clubs know how easy it is to fall from grace so the pressure is truly on all the managers to make sure they do not falter.
The final part of the equation is bottom spot. Elgin City (11) sit in it. With new boss Jim Weir in place and a draw with Arbroath on Tuesday night, it means that we can all hope for some form of revival – unless you are a supporter of any of the clubs above them because if that does happen we could see a number of the clubs above them starting to wobble.
Preview – Match of the Day
East Fife v Montrose
With the home side having drawn with East Stirlingshire and on the same points as their visitors this could be a tight and fascinating encounter. The visitors had been struggling of late so their 2-1 win on Tuesday night ensures they should have enough confidence going into this to make a real fight of things. East Fife should be able to show off new signing and former Real Sociedad centre half, Julen Echaveguren Leanizbarrutia. I reckon that the home side should be in a sufficiently good mood to take the points.
Arbroath v Annan Athletic has the home side back after drawing mid-week with the bottom club. They face an Annan side that beat high-flying Albion Rovers on the same evening. For me I reckon Allan Moore will have made things so abundantly clear about why they should make amends they shall manage it today. Queen’s Park v East Stirlingshire has the Spiders off a good 2-0 win against Clyde playing while the Shire drew with East Fife. A home win I think for me.
Albion Rovers v Elgin City sees Jim Weir’s side, hot off their draw with Arbroath, visit another one of the title chasing sides. The Coatbridge side, having lost midweek should get back on track and take all three points. Finally Berwick Rangers v Clyde sees one point and two places apart with both of them suffering defeats last time out. This should be Colin Cameron’s but Barry Ferguson must get some form and luck soon… shall it be today?