Edinburgh City travel to meet Gretna 2008 at Raydale Park tonight, optimistic that they can strengthen their position in the top half of the Central Taxis Premier Division.
It was only a few weeks ago that City were propping up the table but the return from injury of key players including Ruaraidh Scott and Ian McFarland has seen the Meadowbank-based club climb the league.
“To be honest, before the season started I felt that we would be challenging the ‘big three’ of Stirling University, Spartans and Whitehill Welfare,” said the City manager, Gary Jardine. “We had an excellent run in the Scottish Cup which, as far as I am concerned, probably came along at the wrong time of the season. By that I mean that at this stage of the season everyone has forgotten about how well we did in that competition.
“I think that we are now back where we deserve to be and if we had managed to stay clear of injuries then we could have been even higher in the league. Our results against the top three have all been very narrow defeats.
“We now travel to meet Gretna 2008, who, although they are in second bottom spot, I think that they are also a top five club in the Premier Division. It is only because they have played fewer games than every other club that they find themselves in that position. Their confidence will be high after their Image Printers Cup Final win against Stirling University at the weekend although we are going there with optimism.”
City will have Ross Guthrie, Jamie Bain and Mark Torrance all returning to their squad but Shaun Harrison is still suspended. Gretna will be without captain Dean Rea who was sent off in the final although Joe Slattery returns.
In the First Division, Craigroyston hope to increase their chances of promotion when they travel south to face Berwick Rangers Reserves. Both matches kick off at 7.45pm.