Improved Shire ready for Gala Scottish Cup rematch

Shire were defeated 3-0 at home by Gala last time the two sides met
Shire were defeated 3-0 at home by Gala last time the two sides met

It’s only three weeks since East Stirlingshire last faced Gala Fairydean Rovers, but manager Derek Ure believes his team have moved on to a different level since then as they prepare to match up again in Saturday’s Scottish Cup Second Round tie at Netherdale.

Shire’s 3-0 league defeat last month at the hands of this weekend’s opponents was a real low point for Ure since taking charge but his players appear to have turned a corner.

Back-to-back victories against Civil Service Strollers and league leaders Kelty Hearts in last week’s South Challenge Cup should mean Gala can forget about judging Shire based on their last meeting.

And Ure says the 3-2 win over the Lowland League’s current top dogs should have them raring to go.

“The first thing I said to the players after Saturday’s win was that if they can’t take confidence from that then they’re unlikely to be able to take confidence from anything,” he said.

“We should be flying high and on Saturday we showed just how good we can be.

“There were no faults with the players’ commitment or desire and they answered a lot of the difficult questions I had been asking of them.”

Ure believes the advantage of playing an opponent from your own league in the Scottish Cup is the belief you have a winnable tie.

He accepts that cuts both ways with Gala confident they can replicate the 3-0 victory at the Falkirk Stadium.

But the Shire gaffer expects his players to use their lacklustre display the last time the two teams clashed as motivation as well.

“I have been very clear to the players that they should see this game as a chance to get some revenge,” he said.

“It’s an opportunity to show we are better than we were that day and also a chance to correct what happened.”

The previous Gala outing also came on the back of an excellent cup victory, at Huntly in the cup first round, and Shire go into this on the back of another great victory, with hopes that they can continue this winning run and reach the round that Falkirk and Stenhousemuir enter.