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Airdrie -vs- Sons - Now or Never


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A real nothingy end of season game this one...

Realistically Sons need to win in this or away at Cove if we've got any chance of avoiding ninth place. Likewise Airdrie need to win all three of their remaining games and hope Cove drop some points to have any chance of winning the title.

Despite being hugely impressive all season (and taking 7/9 points available) it would probably be safe to say Airdrie have made hard work of Sons so far. The first game finished in a 2-2 draw, and totally changed when Sam Wardrop did his former employers a favour and got sent off with the Diamonds coasting and 2-0 up.

Then came the bizarre second encounter. With five goals, (three of them after the 90 minute mark), three red cards (four if you include our gaffer) and Airdrie only getting over the line with a last touch winner after a goalkeeping mistake.

After all the fun and games of the previous two games, the 1-0 win at the Rock in early January was a bit dull - with Dylan Easton's strike all that separated the teams.

If I had to choose between Cove and Airdrie going up, the I'd be picking Airdrie every day of the week. I don't try and hide how much admiration I have for Ian Murray - and between him, Aggy and Bryan Prunty you have my all-time favourite DFC manager and two all-time favourite players involved. I'm particularly pleased to see Muzz getting back to himself in the dugout with the Diamonds after the St Mirren spell looked to have ended him. He's done an absolutely superb job since being appointed. It's worth remembering that, back in October 2018, there was nothing between Stevie Findlay's Airdrie and Stevie Aitken's Sons in the league. And now look at where our respective sides are. 

Having said all that, we absolutely owe Airdrie one. And I hope Muzz, Aggy and Prunts endure a miserable 90 minutes and watch their title hopes slip away.

I'd imagine Stevie Farrell will stick with the same side again for this one. Kalvin Orsi was the only player I'd have considered switching out after Alloa, but I thought he was very impressive against Peterhead. I can't say I'm travelling with expectation - but I've got a teeny bit of hope. It'll all depend on the opening 20 minutes though. If Airdrie come out the blocks flying, and with a decent crowd behind them, I fear them blowing us away.

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I've only been to three away games this season and we've won all of them. I'll be there on Saturday.

We've also reached the point in the season when I start dreaming about upcoming games. Last night I dreamt we won 2-0 although the game, bizarrely,  was at the Falkirk stadium.

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Target has to be winning the last three games and seeing where that takes us. Finishing the league campaign by completing a 20 game unbeaten run ought to stand us in good stead for the playoffs. We've bounced back well from any bumps in the road thus far so I expect us to get back to winning ways and I don't anticipate any significant drop in intensity despite losing ground last week. 

The last iteration of this fixture was hilarious and merry bedlam. Are Dumbarton still playing Ramsbottom in goals? He's always entertaining. 

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We'll start the same team again if we possibly can (which won't include The Bum @AndyDD, we have Kieran Wright now) but I hope Faz makes changes a bit more urgently if we aren't cutting it. I'd actually like to see MacLean moved wide with Syvertsen partnering Oyinsan up top, I think that might get the best of our attacking players but I doubt Syvertsen is fit enough to start. 

Airdrie have done well against others but I haven't been that impressed with them in our matches, despite us only taking 1 point from those games. I do worry the small and quick forwards will turn big Stanger and Buchanan inside out, but the former especially has shown he can be an asset in this league, so hopefully he keeps up his form in the centre of defence. Hard to know what sort of mindset they'll be in, they really needed a win last week and they must know Cove will win at least 1 of their remaining games (most likely against us at home) so preparing for the play offs is the most realistic option but I'm sure the party line in public will be "this ain't over yet". 

I just hope that at the end of 90 minutes the players have given everything to try and win the match - If we're being battered and do everything we can to hold on for a point that's fine, but if the game is there for taking (as it has been the last two weeks) and we sit in for a point I'll be pissed off. 

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7 minutes ago, The Moonster said:

We'll start the same team again if we possibly can (which won't include The Bum @AndyDD, we have Kieran Wright now) but I hope Faz makes changes a bit more urgently if we aren't cutting it. I'd actually like to see MacLean moved wide with Syvertsen partnering Oyinsan up top, I think that might get the best of our attacking players but I doubt Syvertsen is fit enough to start. 

Airdrie have done well against others but I haven't been that impressed with them in our matches, despite us only taking 1 point from those games. I do worry the small and quick forwards will turn big Stanger and Buchanan inside out, but the former especially has shown he can be an asset in this league, so hopefully he keeps up his form in the centre of defence. Hard to know what sort of mindset they'll be in, they really needed a win last week and they must know Cove will win at least 1 of their remaining games (most likely against us at home) so preparing for the play offs is the most realistic option but I'm sure the party line in public will be "this ain't over yet". 

I just hope that at the end of 90 minutes the players have given everything to try and win the match - If we're being battered and do everything we can to hold on for a point that's fine, but if the game is there for taking (as it has been the last two weeks) and we sit in for a point I'll be pissed off. 

A blow to fans of spills and thrills everywhere. 

Mindset wise I don't anticipate much change from Airdrie, by the by; at the very least they'll want to see out the remainder of the season unbeaten and take that tally to 20 games. Momentum is important going into the playoffs so, whilst we might take key players off earlier than usual, I don't expect much in the way of changes to the starting 11. 

I can see us getting a penalty off the clumsy Dumbarton defenders, which will cause some consternation and anxiety after Saturday. Indeed, I don't think we've scored any of our last three penalty kicks. 

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3 minutes ago, AndyDD said:

 

I can see us getting a penalty off the clumsy Dumbarton defenders, which will cause some consternation and anxiety after Saturday. Indeed, I don't think we've scored any of our last three penalty kicks. 

Us conceding a penalty and the sky is blue! Things that are just inevitable in life.

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15 minutes ago, AndyDD said:

A blow to fans of spills and thrills everywhere. 

Mindset wise I don't anticipate much change from Airdrie, by the by; at the very least they'll want to see out the remainder of the season unbeaten and take that tally to 20 games. Momentum is important going into the playoffs so, whilst we might take key players off earlier than usual, I don't expect much in the way of changes to the starting 11. 

I can see us getting a penalty off the clumsy Dumbarton defenders, which will cause some consternation and anxiety after Saturday. Indeed, I don't think we've scored any of our last three penalty kicks. 

To be fair, Wright has had a couple of clangers himself so you might not be totally disappointed! 

That's fair about momentum, I doubt Airdrie will take their foot off the gas but I do wonder if the draw last week took a bit of wind out the sails. We shall see. 

I will let Jan confirm but if my memory serves me right he last had our penalties conceded count at 14 in the league this season. 

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2 minutes ago, The Moonster said:

To be fair, Wright has had a couple of clangers himself so you might not be totally disappointed! 

That's fair about momentum, I doubt Airdrie will take their foot off the gas but I do wonder if the draw last week took a bit of wind out the sails. We shall see. 

I will let Jan confirm but if my memory serves me right he last had our penalties conceded count at 14 in the league this season. 

I think it's 14 in all competitions.

Airdrie (H), Cove (H), Montrose (A), Peterhead (A), QP (H), Airdrie (A x 2), Montrose (H), Peterhead (H), Cove (H), Montrose (H), Alloa (A) in the league + Sauchie (H) and Dundee (H) in the cup. Although I might've forgotten a few, they've all blended into one really.

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10 minutes ago, The Moonster said:

To be fair, Wright has had a couple of clangers himself so you might not be totally disappointed! 

That's fair about momentum, I doubt Airdrie will take their foot off the gas but I do wonder if the draw last week took a bit of wind out the sails. We shall see. 

I will let Jan confirm but if my memory serves me right he last had our penalties conceded count at 14 in the league this season. 

Hope endures, then!

Aye it's entirely possible that, try though they might to muster the same level of intensity, there is still a slight drop off and as you say wind coming out the sails a wee bit. Certainly, Dumbarton are in a fight for their lives so any drop off from Airdrie could see us in for a less than comfortable afternoon. If we avoid that then we ought to coast it reasonably easily enough but as mentioned previously, we've never really been completely comfortable against the Sons this season. 

We scored one and missed one against you in the 3-2 game, I'm sure, so not too shocked by a stat like that. 

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19 minutes ago, Jan Vojáček said:

I think it's 14 in all competitions.

Airdrie (H), Cove (H), Montrose (A), Peterhead (A), QP (H), Airdrie (A x 2), Montrose (H), Peterhead (H), Cove (H), Montrose (H), Alloa (A) in the league + Sauchie (H) and Dundee (H) in the cup. Although I might've forgotten a few, they've all blended into one really.

I was looking at this a couple of weeks ago and that's what I got too. The most we'd ever conceded in a season was 12 in 1990/91 so we're past that with at least three more games to come. The record for most penalties in a season combined is 26 also in 90/91 and we currently sit on 20 this season.

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2 hours ago, The Moonster said:

We'll start the same team again if we possibly can (which won't include The Bum @AndyDD, we have Kieran Wright now) but I hope Faz makes changes a bit more urgently if we aren't cutting it. I'd actually like to see MacLean moved wide with Syvertsen partnering Oyinsan up top, I think that might get the best of our attacking players but I doubt Syvertsen is fit enough to start. 

Airdrie have done well against others but I haven't been that impressed with them in our matches, despite us only taking 1 point from those games. I do worry the small and quick forwards will turn big Stanger and Buchanan inside out, but the former especially has shown he can be an asset in this league, so hopefully he keeps up his form in the centre of defence. Hard to know what sort of mindset they'll be in, they really needed a win last week and they must know Cove will win at least 1 of their remaining games (most likely against us at home) so preparing for the play offs is the most realistic option but I'm sure the party line in public will be "this ain't over yet". 

I just hope that at the end of 90 minutes the players have given everything to try and win the match - If we're being battered and do everything we can to hold on for a point that's fine, but if the game is there for taking (as it has been the last two weeks) and we sit in for a point I'll be pissed off. 

Great

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Just now, O'Kelly Isley III said:

Who is the referee for this Saturday's proceedings ?  If it Scott Lambie, Colin Steven or Barry Cook the occasion will likely be 'memorable'.

Thankfully it's Greg Aitken. Who I've always thought was fairly decent, and certainly won't be a rabbit in the headlights like Lambie, Steven and Cook are known to be.*

Spoiler

*And I am aware that making this comment means he'll make Scott Lambie look like Pierluigi Collina...

 

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Wont be able to make this game unfortunately, but a wee break away with the family is massively required (especially before the playoffs!!)

The most important thing from my own Airdrie point of view is retaining the unbeaten run, even if it finishes 5-5 (as possible as a low score bore fest in this fixture) as long as we go into next week on the back of a W or D then I'll take that.  its ALL about preparation for the playoffs now, trying to sort out any niggles, keeping everyone fresh, and regular subs getting minutes to ensure we're in the best possible place, come the first midweek in May!  Controversially I'd be looking at maybe rotating the front men, Gabby more central, smith, frizzell and Easton getting a wee rest at some point (for 30 mins at least).  

Very much a "nothing" fixture from an Airdrie point of view in terms of the league standings, but very important mentally IMO.

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All the games have been bizarre in many ways as set out by the others. We need to keep winning and that's my prediction. Penalty for us in 3rd minute and Agnew gets his goal at last while Currie saves one in 94th minute but we are five up by then. That's not what I will post in the actual P/B one 

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