Seniors: Strollers v Craigie ‘no grudge match’

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Civil Service Strollers boss Andy Raeburn denies that his team will bear any grudges when they face some familiar faces in a visiting Craigroyston side tomorrow.

A large proportion of the Craigie squad have turned out for Strollers in recent years, but Raeburn insists he is unfazed by familiarity with the opposition and the fact the Central Taxis Premier Division game
at Muirhouse represents something of a north Edinburgh derby.

Raeburn also refuted the suggestion that expert knowledge of the playing style of Craigie’s ex-Strollers goalkeeper Stuart Burnside, as well as Neil Campbell, John Dunn, and Michael Somerville are all among the Civil Service alumni – will count for nothing in his preparations.

“It’s good to meet old faces, and there are no grudges from me,” said Raeburn. “A few of them have been coming back to play against us for a number of seasons now, and they are settled in the way Craigroyston play.

“We won’t worry about them because we never concentrate too much on how other teams play. We will be focused on our own game.”

Strollers can go top with victory tomorrow, while Craigroyston are looking for a second successive league victory.

“We’ll take each game as it comes,” added Raeburn. “We treat all matches the same – there’s nothing different just because we’re playing a team close by. It makes no difference who we play, we need to get points on the board.”

Raeburn’s squad will be deprived of the services of a handful of players, including Gavin Burrell and long-term injury victim Jason Young, who has returned to training after fracturing his foot in pre-season.

Leith Athletic and Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale are both scheduled to play home fixtures against university teams. Leith play co-leaders Stirling University while Lothian entertain Edinburgh University.

Heriot-Watt University will pitch up at Fernieside to face Tynecastle while Spartans welcome Coldstream to Ainslie Park this evening.