Craig Tully is convinced his East Stirlingshire side has what it takes to get out of the dogfight to avoid dropping through the SPFL trap door.
It’s been a snakes-and-ladders kind of week for Shire; a 3-0 win over Queen’s Park on Saturday saw the team lift itself out of bottom place, but Tuesday’s postponement of the game at Arbroath and Berwick Rangers’ win the same evening over Annan Athletic saw them slide back down.
This weekend it’s Shire’s turn to host Annan at Ochilview and Tully is hoping the feelgood factor after last Saturday’s win at Hampden has not dimmed.
“We were looking forward to going to Arbroath,” he said. “Everyone got a real lift from the Queen’s Park result and I think they were really up for the game.
“In that sense it was disappointing to have the game called off. What we need to do is keep that winning feeling and take it into Saturday’s game.”
One win was never going to solve all Shire’s problems and Berwick’s victory on Tuesday evening simply underlined that. Tully knows it will not be easy to get Shire out of their current predicament but says neither he or his players are put off by that.
“We went through a few weeks of feeling down about things,” he said. “I think being 2-0 up at Montrose at the start of January and then losing 3-2 had a real negative effect and we did lose a lot of confidence and it took us a while to get ourselves back on our feet.
“But I think the Queen’s Park result and performance shows what we are capable of. We have talked things through with the players and they have responded positively.
“There are a lot of games still to be played and there will be ups and downs along the way but I believe we can get ourselves away from our current situation.”
It is unlikely Tully will do too much tinkering ahead of Saturday’s game against Annan. His options are, in any case, limited. It’s unlikely Ross Gilmour or Michael Wallace will play again this season after picking up almost identical injuries, both players breaking bones in their foot.
Max Wright’s hamstring issues are responding to treatment but Saturday may be too early for him while Billy Vidler, who had a knee operation in January, will be out for a while yet.