Linlithgow boss urges players to earn deals for next season

Todd Lumsden has tied up six of his squad on contracts
Todd Lumsden has tied up six of his squad on contracts
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Linlithgow Rose boss Todd Lumsden has urged his out-of-contract players to prove they merit an extension to their current deals.

Lumsden has tied up six of his current squad on new contracts as he targets a minimum top-four place next season after a forgettable first league campaign in charge.

Jamie McKenzie, Gary Thom, Blair Batchelor, Tommy Coyne, Richie Barnard and Mark Williams have all signed extensions, but the rest of the squad are out of contract.

With the bulk of his squad playing for their futures, Lumsden hopes that will get the best out of his players as they bid to jump up the table. He said: “We’ve signed up players who we think can take us forward. There’s been ups and downs this season and, looking at where we are, we need to make sure that we are not in this position next year. We can still easily finish in the top six once we get games in hand played and get a run of form going. That’ll not do next year, though – we need to be pushing on to the top four, top two and trying to challenge. At the end of the day if you haven’t got a contract then you need to show that you deserve one. Other than the players who we have extended, everybody is out of contract come the end of the season and I think that’s a positive situation to be in because ultimately that will hopefully get the best out of the players.”

Rose visit Broxburn Athletic tomorrow, who are unbeaten in four at home in the Super League. They then turn their attention to a Junior Cup double header with Auchinleck Talbot.

Lumsden added: “It’s good to have a league game, then we are straight into the two cup games back-to-back. You enjoy being in the semi-final of the Scottish Cup but, from the club and the fans’ perspective and where we are in the league, the sooner we get into league games and get the points on the board, the better. All we can do is take care of tomorrow and get at least a point on the board and get a bit of confidence in terms of not losing league games, then we’ll turn our attention to the cup.”