'It's been a short break' - Linlithgow Rose boss

Less than four weeks after winning the East of Scotland League Cup with a thrilling 3-2 final win over Tranent Juniors, Linlithgow Rose will be back playing this Saturday in a pre-season friendly at West Calder United.

Linlithgow Rose boss Gordon Herd's players have been doing pre-season running sessions in recent days
Linlithgow Rose boss Gordon Herd's players have been doing pre-season running sessions in recent days

After recent gruelling running sessions – last weekend the players ran around Linlithgow Loch and did hill runs before doing bleep tests at Linlithgow Sports Centre on Tuesday night – manager Gordon Herd said the players were looking in fine fettle.

"It does seem like it was only five minutes ago we were winning that cup final,” Herd told the Journal and Gazette.

"But I think it’s a good thing because the boys have not allowed their fitness levels to drop. Some guys have been away on holiday so will have different levels of fitness to others, but that’s up to us to monitor it and get everybody to the same level of fitness for the season starting.

"Everybody has enjoyed getting back in amongst it.

"The boys are looking fit, all credit to them. I know it’s only been a couple of weeks but they’ve looked after themselves.

“It’s been quite a short break but the boys know they’ll need to work hard for the beginning of the season.

"We’ve told them the objective is to win the league so we’ll need to put in the hard graft to get the fitness levels up.

"Obviously the games start this Saturday. Normally we like to have maybe six, seven sessions of running but we’ve had three sessions of hard running.

"Theywill get a bit of a rest tonight (Thursday) – when it will be ball work – and then that sets them up for the game on Saturday.”

Meanwhile, Rose pair Dan Baur and Lewis Payne have both left to join Hill of Beath Hawthorne while Thomas Halleran has been released.

“We felt that we just needed to be honest with Lewis, Dan and Tam,” Herd said.

"Where we are with the squad, they were going to struggle to get game time and we just felt that the age they were, they needed more game time than we were able to give them.

"It is best for all parties. Hill of Beath came in with an offer for Lewis and Dan that suited us and suited the two players.

"That’s the recent why those two have gone and Tam has just decided to take a year out of football. He’s had a frustrating time with injuries.”