'We must earn the right to play at a higher level' - Falkirk boss John McGlynn on battle to get Bairns up after four seasons in League 1

Falkirk manager John McGlynn will be going for a second consecutive league win this Saturday (Pic by Michael Gillen)Falkirk manager John McGlynn will be going for a second consecutive league win this Saturday (Pic by Michael Gillen)
Falkirk manager John McGlynn will be going for a second consecutive league win this Saturday (Pic by Michael Gillen)
Falkirk boss John McGlynn has urged his troops to do what recent Bairns sides haven’t by producing the goods on the pitch to get out of League 1 at last.

The 60-year-old former Raith Rovers gaffer arrived at the Falkirk Stadium this summer, with the Bairns entering their fourth season in Scottish football’s third tier having failed to secure promotion under previous managers Ray McKinnon, the joint combination of David McCracken and Lee Miller, plus Paul Sheerin and Martin Rennie.

McGlynn told the Falkirk Herald: "You can generalise and say ‘Yes, four seasons is too long for Falkirk to be in the third tier’. But there’s a reason for it. If you don’t do it on the pitch you get where you deserve to be.

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"You are as well asking if Ross County deserve to be in the Premiership.

"Why not? They’ve done it on the pitch. They might not get a big support, they might not have a great history but you can’t just say Falkirk should be in a higher league because they’re Falkirk.

"You’ve got to do it on the pitch. You’ve got to earn the right and that’s what we’ve got to do.

"It’s been very tough for Falkirk to be here for that length of time but nobody’s feeling sorry for them outside Falkirk so you have really just got to get the bit between the teeth, get your act together and try and do your utmost to get out of this league.

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"Dunfermline fall into the same situation, granted they have not been in the league four years but they’re a big club that’s down here now.

"Should Dunfermline and Falkirk be in the Premiership? Aye they should be, but you’ve got to do it on the pitch and that’s where they’ve not been doing it.”

McGlynn pondered briefly when asked his opinion on why a club like Falkirk, with such a large support and tradition, has been stuck so far down the rungs of the Scottish football ladder.

“It could well be that teams raise their game against Falkirk,” he said. “If you have been working in or following Scottish football for a number of years everyone knows that Falkirk are a massive football club.

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"It’s a motivation for opponents that they want to play against us. Quite often it will be that some of their players are trying to get into your team.

"Players are trying to impress the Falkirk manager hoping that he’s then going to sign them. Players are trying harder.

"Sometimes teams will come here, it’s a big crowd and there is a good atmosphere and that actually helps players playing football.

"So there are a number of reasons but we don’t want people to enjoy coming here, we want them to hate it.

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"We want to make this place somewhere that we fear coming. That is not going to happen overnight but we need to get everyone on board.

"The fans have been fantastic, they’ve been turning up in their numbers supporting the team tremendously well and that’s what we want. We want other teams to think it’s intimidating, Falkirk are playing good football, they play with intensity and are competing well.

"Hopefully through time that’s what we’ll get.”

Falkirk go into this Saturday’s league game at newly promoted FC Edinburgh having earned their first League 1 win of the campaign against Peterhead last Saturday to go fifth in League 1 with four points from three games.

Missing the game as part of a lengthy Bairns injury list are Liam Henderson, PJ Morrison, Brad McKay, Paul Watson, Kai Kennedy and Fin Malcolm but Seb Ross may return.

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McGlynn said: “FC Edinburgh beat Alloa 4-2 last weekend. They have a lot of new signings, a lot of recognised faces and names that have played at a higher level so it certainly won’t be easy.

"But we have got to take confidence from our performance and result at the weekend.

"We have also started the season fairly well. They are sitting on six points so we have an opportunity, even this early in the season, to jump above them and climb the table.

"That’s our aim and that’s our motivation. We worked extremely hard at the weekend and that’s what it’s going to take every week to win games in League 1.

"You’ll have big spells of possession but you have to turn those spells of possession into goals and thankfully we eventually did that on Saturday.”

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