If Blair Alston is keen on saying farewell to Falkirk, he’s contributing to a particularly long goodbye.
Last Friday night could well have been the midfielder’s last match for the Bairns. But Alston’s first half goal, of a particularly healthy season in front of goal, has extended his Bairns career by another week at least.
There has been no option for a last minute substitution and standing ovation, deserved as it may be.
Every match has counted for Falkirk this season, and they continue to do so.
Alston was substituted in a tactical switch against Hibs in a move which saw the scorer replaced by a supplier in Scott Shepherd. At the time, with Hibs 2-1 up, it looked like Alston’s final act in the navy blue.
“At he moment there’s nothing sorted for next year so you always think, every time you play could be the last time.
“Maybe not, though.
“I didn’t think about that really as I walked off. It might make me emotional at a different time, but at that point I was just thinking I was just wanting to be involved in the comeback.
“Naturally you feel frustrated when you come off feeling you could have given more to the team, but fair play to the gaffer he makes the calls, he makes the subs to go get a couple of goals and what a finish to the game.”
Alston’s options are open. St Johnstone’s openly expressed interest has not progressed into a confirmed deal. Falkirk fans want him to stay. Players want him to hang around too. Peter Houston has said he’d love to sit down with the 24-year-old if he expressed a change of heart and desire to stay at the Bairns, and he will do, for another week at least.
Sunday at Rugby Park could be his last match. Alston was in the stand last time Falkirk visited the Ayrshire town and were relegated in a match they had to win to secure top flight status.
The same scenario is likely this weekend, but Alston will be on the pitch, not in the stand.
“I wasn’t in the dressing room that day,” added Alston who was still an Academy player at the time and was yet to make the first of more than 200 appearances. “I made it myself and watched the game, but I wasn’t involved with the squad that day.
“I imagine the journey back was a particularly depressing one.
“As a result people are saying we owe them one but I don’t think it’s anything like that.
“People were saying before Hibs that there was needle between the players and maybe the management but when you go out on the pitch that’s behind you and you just want to do your best.
“If we can play the way we can, on our game, then we can hurt them.
“There is a real togetherness in the squad, even training is competitive – everybody wants to win. That’s showing on the pitch.”