Newtongrnage can’t afford gung-ho attitude in relegation play-off

Stevie McLeish
Stevie McLeish
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Newtongrange Star boss Stevie McLeish has demanded that his players prove they are a better team than Forfar West End tomorrow in the second leg of their Super League relegation play-off.

However, he has warned them to be wary of adopting an all-out attacking approach as a visiting goal could relegate them to the Premier League.

Star trail Forfar 3-1 after the away leg last weekend as they bid to preserve their top-flight status. McLeish was disappointed with how little they created last week, but believes they are a better side.

“We were poor last week,” he said. “We had the greatest start two minutes in with a belter of a free-kick, but that kind of woke up the beast. They came at us, put us under pressure and scored. They scored another two goals which put us in our shell a wee bit and we started doing what we did three months ago.

“They killed the game and made it hard for us to break them down and that’s a problem because we’ve got creative players in our squad and we should be able to break teams down no problem at all.

“I’m not being funny but I really didn’t think they were that great – I feel we are probably a better football team than them, but they got the goals and we didn’t.

“We were aware of the 
fact they are a good team 
at home and maybe not as 
good away from home so 
we’ll see what happens tomorrow.

“If they nick a goal then they’ll feel the tie is over so we’ve got to be careful we don’t go gung-ho and concede a goal because we’d be really up against it.”

McLeish will have to do without several of his players who have opted to make themselves unavailable for tomorrow due to social events. McLeish said: “Several players are unavailable for social reasons, which is disappointing to be honest. I said to them a couple of weeks ago ‘We’ve got two games left and I expect you to make yourselves available’ but unfortunately some people don’t think the way I do. It gives somebody else a platform to go and play and maybe gives the squad added motivation.”