Carnie bids to resurrect struggling Craigroyston

Grant Carnie
Grant Carnie
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Grant Carnie takes charge of his first match as Craigroyston manager tomorrow with a trip to Marine Drive to face Civil Service Strollers.

In what has been a turbulent season so far for the St Mark’s Park club, there have been two managerial departures and only three league wins, which has left Craigie struggling at the foot of the Central Taxis Premier.

Assisted by Paul Cavanagh and former Preston Athletic coach Stevie Adamson, Carnie will be looking for an immediate turnaround in results, with only six league games of the season left to stave off the threat of relegation.

“We have got six ‘cup finals’ between now and the end of the season and I’ve told the players what I expect of them,” said the former Lothian Thistle manager.

“We are in a position where we have to start winning games. There are some very experienced players at this football club who have responded well so far to what we want them to do.”

Carnie will be able to field Nicky Rendall against his former club tomorrow as he has now been signed on a permanent deal from Strollers following a loan spell, along with striker Steven Rooney who played under Carnie at Lothian.

Strollers manager Ross McNeill has a minor personnel problem, with Dane Robertson, Neil Campbell and Martin Robertson all missing due to injury, and Jack Downie, Ross McWilliams and Steven Moncur also unavailable.

Leith Athletic travel to Coldstream on the back of a fantastic midweek Image Printers Cup semi-final win over Lowland League leaders Edinburgh City, on penalties.

Derek Riddel’s side will be looking to go six points clear at the top tomorrow when they travel to the Borders, with injuries to Euan Campbell and Mark Leslie.

Easthouses Lily can keep up the pressure on Leith when they host Spartans EOS at Newbattle Complex.

Lily boss Dave McQueenie will be missing Steven Campbell for tomorrow’s game, although David Arthur returns from suspension.

Spartans EOS manager Alex Cunningham has a full squad to choose from as the Ainslie Park side go in search of their third straight league win, with Davy Stewart returning from food poisoning.

In the other Premier League fixture, Tynecastle host Stirling University at Fernieside, kicking off at 2pm.

All other fixtures tomorrow kick off at 3pm.

• Heriot-Watt bid to take down Peebles

Heriot-Watt head coach Chris Smith will be looking for his side to become the first team to defeat Peebles Rovers in the Central Taxis First Division tomorrow at Whitestone Park.

The students claimed an important three points at Riccarton last week against another title contender, Ormiston, but Smith knows his side face a tough examination tomorrow.

“Peebles are at the top of the league because they haven’t lost a game so it’s going to be a very tough game,” said Smith.

“It’s important that we go there and not be afraid because with the games in hand that we have, we can get ourselves into one of the promotion slots. We still have to play Kelso for the first time this season as well so there’s points to play for.”

Smith will be missing striker Scott Davies through injury, whilst Brian Anderson tweaked his hamstring midweek and is also unavailable.

Ormiston, meanwhile, welcome Hawick Royal Albert to Recreation Park, with Brian Johnston missing Redmond Barker and Craig Wojtowycz to suspension following their dismissals at Heriot-Watt.

Work has now begun on a new grass pitch at Recreation Park to comply with Lowland League criteria.

Both tomorrow’s matches kick off at 3pm.