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Francesc Fabregas

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Francesc Fabregas last won the day on October 1 2021

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    Stenhousemuir

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  1. We'll face Elgin City or Dundee United B away in the second round of the SPFL Trust Trophy. Hold me back!
  2. We've been playing that like for most of Stephen Swift's time in charge of Stenhousemuir, with the centre-backs passing the ball out from the back and Nat Wedderburn dropping deep. It's broadly worked, but I agree that Sean Crighton and Nicky Jamieson are not fantastic at getting play going and a more "horses-for-courses" is necessary. In the two pre-season matches I've seen, Jamieson's errors in possession have directly led to two goals. He needs to sharpen up. As for the rest of the game, we looked alright and moved the ball around well enough but I don't really remember us having a shot on goal. We didn't create much (anything?) and we rarely ventured into the final third. Wedderburn was solid and Mikey Anderson continues to impress me; that's about it. Still plenty to work on by the time we face Albion Rovers at the end of the month. Any idea who the trialist was? He didn't contribute much but he did play wide on the right, so it's good to see we're looking to address the area.
  3. Stenhousemuir lost a closed-doors friendly against Greenock Morton this evening, going down 1-0 courtesy of a trialist. A source tells me that we "created several chances", so that's an improvement on Saturday's meeting with Berwick Rangers!
  4. Annan Athletic Forfar Athletic Stenhousemuir Dumbarton Stirling Albion East Fife Bonnyrigg Rose Athletic Elgin City Stranraer Albion Rovers
  5. We kicked off our pre-season friendlies with an uninspiring 1-1 draw at Berwick Rangers. The home side took the lead through Lewis Baker midway through the second half before Tam Orr equalised shortly afterwards; a stalemate was the correct outcome. Stenny saw a lot of the ball but did little with it, while Berwick were mostly compact and scored with their only shot of the game. It was a low-stakes, low-tempo encounter, and we were quite sloppy, particularly in the first half. Things picked up with the introduction of Mikey Anderson and Scott Walker at the interval, two players who looked like they were taking things seriously - Anderson tried to drive us forward from midfield while Walker looked to get forward from right-back and clipped in a nice cross for Orr to head home. It's hard to critique the match when it's our first time out after almost two months away and I'm aware that every concern must be framed around this but there wasn't a lot to like from today (Anderson and Walker aside). The 4-4-2 formation didn't seem to suit the personnel, with Adam Brown and then Ross Forbes fielded on the right of midfield, and we struggled to find any rhythm or create any chances. From Stephen Swift's post-match interview, it sounds as though this is a system the team have been working on but it doesn't really work without a specialist winger. This was a problem area last term and I'm disappointed it hasn't been properly addressed. Swift says we won't be bringing in any other players either and will be proceeding with a squad of 19. We seem overstocked in the middle of the park and don't have a proper right winger. One or two injuries and we look light. As for the new players, no-one stood out. Conor Brennan played the first half and Jay Cantley the second; the former had nothing to do while the latter failed to react as Baker's shot hit the net. Craig Bryson played one nice pass with the outside of his foot but didn't do much beyond that before being removed at half time (and I'm still not sure about how we get him into the team with Nat Wedderburn and Mikey Miller). Matty Yates had no impact on the game and Niyah Joseph, a second-half substitute, couldn't find an opening on the left. From last season's players, Orr had a good second half but that was about it. I don't want to read too much into the match. It was a fun day out and good to return to Shielfield Park with my friends. I'm looking forward to our next match!
  6. The club have published a short interview with Stephen Swift in advance of tomorrow's match against Berwick Rangers. It's not terribly illuminating and the questions and their answers are broadly what you'd expect at this stage (why was he not asked about the signings of Craig Bryson or Will Sewell? Or how he saw us lining up? Or if anyone else was coming in?) but the manager does seem content to go into the new campaign with 19 players. I think that leaves us a little short and I hope we still have the capacity to bring in one more right-sided attacker. He also spoke again about last summer's recruitment and how building a new squad was one of the defining factors in our poor season. That's certainly not the case this time around so he's going into this campaign under a greater degree of pressure. If we have a similar start to last term, I worry it could cost him. There are no excuses this time around! I've also been watching some clips of Conor Brennan playing for East Kilbride last season and he looks really ropey; I don't think he's any better than Ryan Marshall or David Wilson and he'll cost us points. I do hope I'm wrong!
  7. Indeed, James Lyon was an enormous disappointment last season and I go so far as to say I would be astonished if he as any future at Partick Thistle or in full-time football. He scored a smashing goal on his debut in a League Cup group-stage tie against a depleted Dumbarton side, and expectations were quite high (at one point, I believed we had the new Harry Paton on our books!) But it became quickly apparent that he found the rough and tumble of League 2 a little overwhelming - he was lightweight, easy to push around and he always needed time and space on the ball, something he rarely got. A loss of form, coupled with injuries, saw his participation limited to just 17 appearances over the course of the season. But who knows! He might come good! Maybe!
  8. For what it's worth, I've always thought Declan Byrne was quite a decent player. He's big and broad and he can put himself about, occupying defenders and bringing others into play. I don't think he's the most technically blessed of forwards but if there are players around him that can capitalise on his dirty work, he could be a smart piece of business.
  9. Not particularly, no. Declan Hughes was one of the "BSC lot" Stephen Swift recruited en masse from his former club. I felt he had a bit about him and had some talent with the ball at his feet but he was too slow and immobile for the SPFL and of no use without possession, especially when play transitioned. He had issues with injuries and his overall fitness and didn't feature at all for Stenhousemuir in 2022. Hughes might do Bo'ness United a decent turn, if he can get himself in decent shape. Good luck to him.
  10. We're talking on Albion Rovers at home on the first day of the season. The Vers are a side we did pretty well against last term, winning three and drawing the other, and this is a good opportunity for us to make a positive start to the campaign!
  11. We must only be one player (a right-sided attacker) away from completing our squad for the year ahead. That'll take us to 20 and give us the quality, depth and versatility we need. I wonder who's available? His name has been mentioned elsewhere in this thread but Hibernian's Joao Balde intrigues me!
  12. Thank you for the information. Adam Corbett is currently our first-choice right-back (and Callum Yeats is the premier choice on the left), so I reckon Scott Walker's been brought in to add depth to our defence. I hope he can do us a good turn!
  13. We've signed Scott Walker from yourselves - he's not a player I know much about, but what can we expect? He's been billed as a full-back that can play on the right and the left.
  14. Here's an updated squad list following tonight's business: GOALKEEPERS Conor Brennan (signed from East Kilbride) Jay Cantley (signed from Airdrieonians) DEFENDERS Adam Corbett Sean Crighton Daniel Higgins (signed from East Fife) Nicky Jamieson Scott Walker (signed from Airdrieonians) Callum Yeats (signed from Queen's Park - on loan) MIDFIELDERS Mikey Anderson Adam Brown Craig Bryson (signed from St Johnstone) Ross Forbes Mikey Miller (signed from Ayr United - loan made permanent) Nat Wedderburn FORWARDS Niyah Joseph (signed from Queen of the South) Euan O'Reilly Tam Orr Will Sewell (signed from Largs Thistle) Matty Yates (signed from Stranraer)
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