East Stirlingshire's 'soft' nature root cause of poor Lowland League form, reckons Pat Scullion

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​East Stirlingshire manager Pat Scullion admits ‘his side still look soft at times’ as they fell to a fourth consecutive Scottish Lowland Football League defeat at the weekend.

The Shire travelled to Linlithgow Rose after a three-week hiatus and they lost a goal after just four minutes, when Calum Rae scored. Dylan Paterson then made it two for the hosts on the half hour mark to take game away from the Falkirk side – who now sit third bottom, four points adrift of Berwick Rangers in 15th place.

Speaking to Shire TV, boss Scullion said: “Losing the early goal deflated us slightly. We some good individual performances but the truth was that it was another match this season that saw us lose out on the individual battles.

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“We looked a bit soft at times. We need to rectify that either through picking different players or having the players that are already here go out and not lose out on their 1v1 duels.

Shire boss Pat Scullion (Photo: Alan Murray)Shire boss Pat Scullion (Photo: Alan Murray)
Shire boss Pat Scullion (Photo: Alan Murray)

“We have a decent structure and shape to us but we don’t make the right calls on the pitch. You can build a team spirit by winning games, but we aren’t at the moment and that makes it harder.

“We showed great effort and endeavour but some of our decision making in the final third and at the back let us down. We did carry a threat but you cannot give a team a goal a start, or two goals a start, before you really take the game to them.

“It allowed them to ‘waste’ the game as it went on which they are totally entitled to do.”

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With the Shire having only won three of their opening 16 league outings, Scullion admits things need to change, as he revealed that “personal changes” are in the offing.

Linlithgow Rose celebrate their opener versus the Shire (Photo: Alan Murray)Linlithgow Rose celebrate their opener versus the Shire (Photo: Alan Murray)
Linlithgow Rose celebrate their opener versus the Shire (Photo: Alan Murray)

"The game can be going okay but you need to be on it for the full match. Our concentration isn’t there. The truth is that we have lost our last four league games.

“There will be some personal changes. But I think what we can do is to build up the players already here and to really make sure that they have strong concentration levels.”

East Stirlingshire now play host to local rivals Bo’ness United at the Falkirk Stadium on Saturday afternoon, with kick-off at 3pm. The BU sit in fifth spot on 29 points.