Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale boss Raymond Carr recognises it is going to take time for his new-look squad to find their feet in what is a completely different East of Scotland League set-up this season.
The Saughton based club, runners-up last year to champions Kelty Hearts and league winners the season before, have found the going tough so far in Conference B in a division which comprises Junior heavyweights Bonnyrigg Rose and Bo’ness United. Carr believes the club have become a victim of their own success in recent years, with players including prolific striker Jamie Devlin and midfield lynchpin Louis Swanson having moved on from last season, incidentally, to two of their Conference B rivals in Tranent and Bonnyrigg.
“It’s really been like a rebuilding programme,” said Carr. “It’s getting the quality we had before that’s the problem; if you’re looking for the quality it’s a lot of money you’ve got to spend and we’ve not got that.
“If players are moving on and they are going to so-called bigger clubs then we must be doing something right. It’s impossible to compete with some of these teams and the financial backing they’ve got.
“I said to the guys at the start of the season that this is going to be a really, really tough season for us. We haven’t got off to the best start but it’s something we are determined to try and put right. We’ve still got a bit time to do it, but we’ve got to start climbing the table. We’re not out of it by any means.”