Losing is not an option as Whitehill Welfare take on Dalbeattie Star

Whitehill Welfare manager Ian Little
Whitehill Welfare manager Ian Little
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WHITEHILL WELFARE boss Ian Little labelled tomorrow’s crucial bottom-of-the-table encounter against Dalbeattie Star in Dumfries as a “six-pointer”.

Whitehill have not had a league win in more than three months – their last coming against Dalbeattie on September 1. A 3-1 defeat at league leaders East Kilbride last weekend ramped up the pressure on new boss Little, who claimed he saw enough positive signs from the performance to ensure they can stave off the threat of relegation this season.

A much-needed victory over second-bottom Star at Islecroft Stadium could be a huge psychological boost for his side as they look to bridge the six-point gap at the foot of the table.

Little said: “We’ve only had about seven or eight training sessions and I’ve asked the players to play a new system which they’re slowly getting used to. Hopefully we can take some confidence from the East Kilbride game into this match. It’s a huge one for both teams and losing is not an option, considering the run of fixtures we’ve got coming up.

“We tried to match East Kilbride from the beginning in horrendous conditions, but we made a couple of mistakes – things we have since rectified and worked on in training this week.

“I could sense a bit of belief from the boys when they scored last week that they could turn things around. We’ll keep working hard and hopefully get some points on the board.”

Whitehill include new signings Mikey Hamilton and former Hibs goalkeeper Paul Grant, who joins from Broxburn Athletic, in their squad.

Elsewhere, Spartans return to league action looking to build on their three-match winning run against managerless Gretna 2008 at Ainslie Park.

Striker Stephen MacDonald admits they face an unknown quantity when the Borderers arrive in the Capital. He stated: “I’m not too sure what to expect from Gretna because they won easily 5-1 against Edusport last weekend but were beaten 6-0 the previous week.”

Civil Service Strollers were one of several clubs to be affected by the winter weather last Saturday, but they return to league duty against an Edusport side fresh from that heavy defeat by Gretna.