Falkirk v Formartine United: Bairns manager John McGlynn reveals key midfielder is injury doubt for this weekend's Scottish Cup third round tie

Over 11 years after their paths almost crossed as manager/player at former club Raith Rovers, Falkirk gaffer John McGlynn caught up with his Formartine United counterpart Stuart Anderson last weekend as the Bairns gaffer spied on this Saturday’s Scottish Cup third round opponents.
Brad Spencer has scored three goals in 17 league and cup appearances for Falkirk this season (Pic Michael Gillen)Brad Spencer has scored three goals in 17 league and cup appearances for Falkirk this season (Pic Michael Gillen)
Brad Spencer has scored three goals in 17 league and cup appearances for Falkirk this season (Pic Michael Gillen)

McGlynn, 61, was taking in Formartine’s 2-1 Highland League loss at Banks O’Dee, during which he encountered 37-year-old former central midfield player Anderson, a man of several clubs who joined Raith for a season on July 12, 2012, just 16 days after McGlynn had departed the Stark’s Park manager’s role to take over as Hearts gaffer.

“I don’t really know Stuart much although I did meet him last week when I went up to Formartine’s away game against Banks O’Dee,” McGlynn, who led Falkirk to the Scottish Cup semi-finals last season, told the Falkirk Herald.

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"After I left to join Hearts all those years ago, Paul Smith (Falkirk assistant manager) stayed on at the Rovers at that time. He said Stuart was a decent player when you gave him the ball, a good type of boy.”

Stuart Anderson battles for the ball with Motherwell's Allan Campbell during Formartine United's 5-0 Scottish Cup third round loss to Motherwell on April 3, 2021 (Pic Dave Cowe)Stuart Anderson battles for the ball with Motherwell's Allan Campbell during Formartine United's 5-0 Scottish Cup third round loss to Motherwell on April 3, 2021 (Pic Dave Cowe)
Stuart Anderson battles for the ball with Motherwell's Allan Campbell during Formartine United's 5-0 Scottish Cup third round loss to Motherwell on April 3, 2021 (Pic Dave Cowe)

Although Falkirk are a lowest priced 1/20 to beat their Ellon visitors (who can be backed at 25/1 to win in 90 minutes at the Falkirk Stadium), McGlynn is taking nothing for granted against the team currently third in the Highland League with 29 points from 14 games.

He said: “At 3 o’clock last Saturday Formartine were top of their league before they lost that game. But they have shown that they’re potentially the best team in that league.

"And we know that some of these teams from the Highland League can make it very, very difficult for you.

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"There are examples like Brora beating Stenhousemuir in the last round.

John McGlynn led Falkirk to the Scottish Cup semi-finals last season (Pic Michael Gillen)John McGlynn led Falkirk to the Scottish Cup semi-finals last season (Pic Michael Gillen)
John McGlynn led Falkirk to the Scottish Cup semi-finals last season (Pic Michael Gillen)

"So we have to respect them and we have to make sure that we are very much at it.

"We want to try and build on our performance last week (a 4-2 home SPFL Trust Trophy quarter-final win over Dundee United). Every game’s different, we know that, but we’re at home and on paper I think most people would expect us to get through.

"We’ve got to go on the pitch and do it. It’s the usual 11 v 11 on the pitch between 3 o’clock and 5 o’clock.”

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McGlynn revealed that midfielder Brad Spencer is an injury doubt to face Formartine as he has picked up an ankle knock.

“That is causing us a concern so we’ll give him until the last minute,” the Bairns boss added. “He’s not trained all week so it is an issue for us.”

Long term injury absentees Stephen McGinn, Brad McKay and Gary Oliver remain out.