Captain Kerr looks ahead to season 2017-18

SEASON 2017/2018 (L-R): Brechin City's Paul McLean, Dumbarton's Andy Dowie, Queen of the South's John Rankin, Falkirk's Mark Kerr, Morton's Thomas O'Ware, St Mirren's Stephen McGinn, Dundee Utd's Tam Scobbie, Inverness CT's Gary Warren, Dunfermline's Callum Morris and Livingston's Craig Halkett.
SEASON 2017/2018 (L-R): Brechin City's Paul McLean, Dumbarton's Andy Dowie, Queen of the South's John Rankin, Falkirk's Mark Kerr, Morton's Thomas O'Ware, St Mirren's Stephen McGinn, Dundee Utd's Tam Scobbie, Inverness CT's Gary Warren, Dunfermline's Callum Morris and Livingston's Craig Halkett.

Mark Kerr insists Falkirk will use the disappointment of the last three seasons to drive them on as the Championship kicks off today.

The Bairns have been so close to returning to the top flight but have only found heartache in the play-offs.

Mark Kerr is looking for a good start to the league campaign. Picture Michael Gillen.

Mark Kerr is looking for a good start to the league campaign. Picture Michael Gillen.

But Kerr says they will channel that hurt and it has only made them more determined to finally get back to where he feels the club should be.

Kerr said: “If you at the calibre of team that has been in the league – Hearts, Hibs, Rangers and Dundee United – it’s been hard.

“But we are a good club with a good support.

“Last year we probably didn’t get off to the start we needed. We felt we should have challenged Hibs more and put them under more pressure.

Falkirk's Mark kerr and Michael Dunlop of Stenhousemuir were among the captains looking ahead to the new season.

Falkirk's Mark kerr and Michael Dunlop of Stenhousemuir were among the captains looking ahead to the new season.

“There was a moment when we had a chance to get within three points if we beat them and they had some game to catch up.

“But James Keatings scored in the last minute with a great goal and that summed up the season.

“Hibs knew how important that goal was and they were comfortable in the end.

“We pushed them a lot harder the previous year and edged them for second and made it to the play-off final.

“I think that game with Kilmarnock was hard to take because we let ourselves down and I think there was a hangover from that.

“We’re fresh and ready to go again and hopefully we’ll get the luck this time too.”

United have been installed as favourites but that doesn’t faze Kerr , who will lead the the Bairns into their opener against St Mirren today in Paisley.

Speaking at the pre-season captains’ media call at Hampden earlier this week with league sponsors Ladbrokes, he said: “I haven’t really read that but if I see it I’ll just turn the page.

“United are a brilliant club and I had five great years there but we believe in ourselves. We’re not big-headed but we have the confidence that we have a good squad that has very good mentality.

“We’ve had to face teams of stature in the last few seasons and they are a big club.

“But we don’t accept that on the pitch. They don’t have any better fans than us or a better set-up.

“We’re all set to go and hopefully this year we get off to a good start.”

After and excellent Betfred Cup campaign, Kerr reckons Falkirk are more pacey and potent up front.

He added: “ Nathan Austin is looking like a different player. He has come from part-time football and he has learned a lot.

“He has adapted and he looks like a right good player.

“We’ve got Rory Loy and he’s got that bit of quality in creating space and I think Craig Sibbald is going to stay with us now so we’re in good shape.”