Arniston boss believes young side can progress in Junior Cup

Jock Landells
Jock Landells
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Arniston Rangers boss Jock Landells hopes his side can make home advantage count when they host Wishart Juniors in their Scottish Junior Cup second round replay.

The Gorebridge club are happy for a break from League football having become rooted to the bottom of the Premier League.

A summer of upheaval, with a host of players departing for pastures new, has meant it has taken time for the new squad to gel, but Landells is confident better times are ahead.

“We lost a lot of players, with one of them being Lumbert [Kateleza] who is doing really well at Penicuik; losing him was a massive blow,” said Landells.

“It’s been a challenge for myself trying to get players in. We don’t have a lot of finances, so we had to go down the young route and try to develop them. They are just starting to find their feet now. It’s taking them a few months because a lot of them came from under-21s.

“We’re bottom of the league and our priority is to stay in the Premier League, but we’re enjoying the cup runs as well. The month of October has been pretty good for us, it’s given us a wee bit of confidence.”

Arniston secured a replay thanks to Liam McIntosh’s second-half equaliser last week and Landells is hopeful, if they can replicate that form, they can progress to round three.

“We didn’t start well; we lost Jack Hay after five minutes with a bad head injury. He got knocked out after a clash with one of their defenders when he banged his head off the guy’s knee. He looked in a bad way.

“For 20 minutes after that we lost our way a wee bit; it kind of upset us a wee bit as it didn’t look great. Once they scored, we were actually the better team; it gave us a wee jolt.

“I was quite pleased with the performance although. I said to the players it’s only half-time and there’s no guarantee we are going to win the replay because we’re at home. If we go with the attitude we had after 20 minutes on Saturday, I’m fairly confident we’ll have a chance.”