The only motivation East Stirlingshire will need ahead of their Lowland League clash against Selkirk at Ochilview on Saturday will be a reminder of the last meeting of the teams.
That’s according to Shire assistant coach Martin Mooney, who described the team’s incredible 7-4 defeat by this weekend’s opponents back in September as “possibly one of the worst days of my football career.”
Shire had gone into the game as overwhelming favourites against a team at the bottom of the league but found themselves 3-0 down after less than 15 minutes and despite hauling the game back to 4-4 they collapsed again at the end. Mooney is vowing to try and make sure there is no repeat this time as Shire go for four wins on the bounce. “It was a shock result,” he said of the September encounter with this weekend’s opponents. “I think in all my time in football I’ve never been stunned as much. It was one of the worst days in my football career, and I don’t mean to show any disrespect to Selkirk. It was more just the manner of how it happened.
“We went down there with the wrong mentality. Players went there thinking it would be an easy three points and we have said on many occasions that if we don’t turn up in this league then these things can happen. Hopefully this Saturday that will be motivation enough to go and get the three points.”
Mooney was also at pains to point out that the last Selkirk game was a turning point in Shire’s season. Since then they have lost only two games in ten, and both of those to the last kick of the ball.
Defensively Shire have gone from conceding seven goals in one game to letting in seven over their next ten games and up front they have scored 17 goals in their last three games.
“Our fans must be really pleased,” said the Shire assistant coach. “We are scoring goals, the team is pleasing to watch, we are always on the front foot and there are goals there. We aren’t conceding many either so considering what it was like when we went to Selkirk before then maybe it was a good thing that it happened because since then you could not have asked for anything more from the boys.”
Last weekend’s 6-2 win over Preston Athletic moved Shire three points closer to the top of the Lowland League as leaders East Kilbride at last lost a game after 14 straight wins.
But there is no mention of that around the club. Rather than getting lost in talk about what they need to catch the top side, Shire remain focused simply on extending the winning streak by one more match.