Craig Tully wants his East Stirlingshire players to show no fear and get back to winning ways when they face high-flying Queen’s Park at Airdrie on Saturday.
The Shire boss was a disappointed man after last weekend’s 1-1 draw against East Fife, the team’s first in 29 league and cup matches dating back to February, which he says, “felt more like a defeat”.
It ended their chances of making it three wins in a row and although there is a chance of extending the unbeaten run to four at the Excelsior Stadium this weekend, the club’s head coach is still mulling over why they did not pick up the full three points last week.
“We had set ourselves the target of making it three wins from three games and we were disappointed with the outcome of the game,” he said. “It felt more like a defeat because we had plenty of opportunities to win and didn’t take them, especially in the first half.
“The league is really tight and we had the chance to end up at the head of the pack chasing the top three.”
Midweek results have underlined the importance for Shire of getting something from the encounter with Queen’s Park. While Tully is adamant his men dropped points at the weekend, those around them, notably Annan Athletic and Elgin City, gained them at the expense of leaders Arbroath and second-placed Albion Rovers.
“The league is tight and there is nothing in the way of margin of error for you. But if you can put a run together that makes the rewards all the greater. We know Queen’s Park are having a good season and that we didn’t do well against them the last time we played them. But that should make us more determined to im prove on that and do well this time.”
Tully is waiting on the fitness of a couple of players ahead of Saturday’s game but is almost certain to name the same starting eleven for the fourth week running if he is able.
He believes their revival in fortunes is at least partly down to being able to name a settled team for each match.
“I don’t really believe in making changes for the sake of it,” he said. “But we are only able to name a settled team because we have got almost all of our senior players back from injury. It’s only in the last few weeks that has happened and it has made a huge difference.”
Tully thinks if he had important players like Chris Townsley, Max Wright, Neil McCabe and Michael Bolochoweckyj available earlier they might have been better placed than they currently find themselves.”