STEVE PITTMAN reckons Broxburn could end up punching above their weight in this season’s Super League and he is urging his players to hang around for a proper test in the top flight.
Athletic are lying third in the table, having closed the gap on second-placed Bo’ness to three points on the back of a 1-0 home win over Sauchie last weekend. They are at home again tomorrow, when Musselburgh are the visitors to New Albyn Park (1.30pm kick-off), and Pittman is looking for another Broxburn victory.
“It would be a good way to start the new year, especially having ended 2012 with a pleasing win last weekend,” said the former East Fife and Dundee defender.
“When we played at Musselburgh earlier in the season we were winning 2-1 then had a man sent off, but managed to hold on for a 2-2 draw.
“David McGlynn has brought in a few young lads there this season and they’ll get stronger as the campaign goes on.
“We’re doing okay ourselves but if we went on to finish, say, second in this league then I reckon it would be a case of us over-achieving. That’s not to say I don’t have faith in my players because I know for a fact that they can beat anyone on their day.
“I just think it’s a weird league this season due to the fact there’s no relegation and the title race has become an anti-climax due to Linlithgow being so far ahead and I, for one, certainly can’t see them being caught.”
Due to those factors, Pittman has decided against adding to his squad at the moment, but he is keeping his fingers crossed that some of his players won’t be lured away in the summer.
With four teams coming up from the Premier Division, he’s bracing himself for a much stiffer test than this season and reckons he’ll need as strong a squad as he can muster. “Next year will be the real deal again because there’s no doubt that the four sides stepping up will be strong ones,” he added.
“It will be a lot harder for all of us, including ourselves, and I just hope that I can hang on to the players we’ve got at the moment as well as adding a few more in the summer.
“It could be the case that a club comes along and offers some of my players an extra £20-£30 per week. My message to them would be that this game shouldn’t just be about money and that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.
“Being able to enjoy your football and training is a big thing in my book and hopefully that’s the case at Broxburn, where players are also able to enjoy excellent facilities.”
McGlynn admits the current campaign is “a bit of a joke” but, on the plus side, it’s enabling him to rebuild his team without the fear of relegation.
“There’s no doubt it’s a weird set up this season but from my point of view it’s a case of looking at the bigger picture,” he said. “I’m getting the chance to get a better balance in my squad and it’s great to have boys who want to go out there and play for you.
“I know where I need to strengthen for next season but I feel as though I’m only two or three players away from having as strong a team here as I ever have.”
One player McGlynn has huge admiration for will be up against his side tomorrow – and he reckons the individual in question should be playing in the SFL.
“Pitts has done a great job at Broxburn and I speak to him quite a lot,” he added. “His son, Scott, is a cracking player and I’ve actually been talking to Arbroath manager Paul Sheerin about him getting the chance there. He could definitely play at a higher level than the Super League and just needs a break from someone.
“There are a lot of wee gems in Junior football and I’m surprised that clubs aren’t knocking on the door for them.”
Elsewhere in the top flight tomorrow runaway league leaders Linlithgow travel to Carnoustie, Bo’ness entertain Sauchie while Bonnyrigg take on Hill of Beath in Fife.