BO’NESS manager Alan McGonigal has targeted tomorrow’s Super League encounter at home to Musselburgh tomorrow as the ideal preparation for his club’s assault on the Scottish Junior Cup.
McGonigal’s team are still on a high after knocking out holders Auchinleck Talbot last time out and will travel to face St Andrews in the fourth round on January 18 in a tie McGonigal believes is very winnable.
And, with last year’s runners-up Linlithgow also losing in the third round to Shotts Bon Accord, and Bo’ness themselves knocking out another favourite, Bonnyrigg, in round one, everyone connected with the BUs is dreaming of lifting the famous old trophy.
However, St Andrews has not always been a happy hunting ground for Bo’ness and the Fifers posted an incredible 17-1 victory over Whitehills FC in the second round.
Musselburgh are also in the draw for the fourth round, but face a daunting home tie against Ayrshire side Glenafton. However, just to be in the last 32 is a real achievement for the young East Lothian team and they will travel to West Lothian full of confidence.
McGonigal said: “The Scottish looks to be our best bet for major silverware now after a disappointing few weeks in the league where we now find ourselves in fifth spot in the table, although, with both Newtongrange and Linlithgow on local cup duties, we could make up some ground on the leaders.
“We’ve been drawn away to St Andrews in the fourth round of the Scottish and although it’s an away tie for us we know all about the Fife side.
“Starting tomorrow we will use these games to set us up for the St Andrews tie. Musselburgh will come here tomorrow and give us a real hard match. Davy McGlynn sets his sides up well and we’ll need to be at our best to get a win.
“I would think Davy will come here and use this game as a preparation for their tie at home to Glenafton.”
Bo’ness have seen their campaign for the Super League tile stutter in recent weeks, with a 3-0 defeat at Bonnyrigg painful. They also face a Christmas derby at home to rivals Linlithgow on December 28, a game which could either reignite title ambitions or finally douse them out.
Musselburgh boss McGlynn is looking at tomorrow’s game as a measure for what he needs to do for the Scottish. “We have three hard games coming before we play a West Super League side in the Scottish. It’s a tough programme for the club but one we all want. To be in the Scottish in January is a success for the club and a reward for a lot of hard work.
“It’s always a hard game at Bo’ness and tomorrow’s game will not be any different. Alan has his strikers on fire just now apart from a couple of weeks ago against Bonnyrigg but they will give us a real test.”
Elsewhere tomorrow, there is a derby in the Fife & Lothians Cup between Dalkeith and Newtongrange – a game which will no doubt will stir memories of past battles. Newtongrange are sitting proudly at the top of the Super League while Dalkeith boss Willie Pearson is looking for a reaction after last Saturday’s Scottish Cup exit at the hands of Hill Of Beath.
In the Super League, Bonnyrigg are at an improving Tayport while Broxburn visit Lochee United and Armadale travel to Carnoustie.
There is Premier League business with Bathgate at home to Pumpherston while, in the South Division, Whitburn are at home to Haddington, Edinburgh play Tranent and Crossgates entertain Blackburn.
Another local team in the Scottish Junior Cup fourth round draw are Penicuik who have been drawn away to West Super League side Pollok, who recently lost their manager the former Bathgate player Stevie Docherty. Dunbar United probably drew the worst tie of the round away to Shotts.
Scottish Junior Cup 4th round draw (ties to be played January 18): Pollok v Penicuik, Kilwinning v Sauchie, Dalry v Cumbernauld, Larkhall v Hurlford, Cambuslang v Dundonald, Yoker, v Montrose, Kilsyth v Largs, Girvan v Glencairn, Musselburgh v Glenafton, Irvine Meadow v Petershill, Tayport v Hill Of Beath, St Andrews v Bo’ness, Camelon v Carnoustie, Cumnock v Neilston, Benburb v WVFC, Shotts v Dunbar.