Lowland League: Whitehill Welfare planning upset against Spartans

Nicky Faulds, pictured during his Gretna days
Nicky Faulds, pictured during his Gretna days
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Whitehill Welfare’s elusive wait for a league victory stretches back almost five months. However, you have to go back more than two years since they last tasted success against tomorrow’s visitors to Ferguson Park – Spartans.

The Rosewell outfit remain rooted to the foot of the table after collecting a mere six points from their previous 17 fixtures, and games are quickly beginning to run out as they look to preserve their Lowland League status.

The situation may appear bleak for Ian Little’s team, but centre-back Nicky Faulds remains upbeat and reckons one victory could be all it takes to turn their fortunes around.

The 29-year-old, signed last September by previous manager Jock Landells, knows the statistics don’t make for good reading but reckons that they are different team under their new boss, Little.

“Our performances over the last month or two have been a lot better, but we just don’t seem to be getting the rub of the green,” stated the former Gretna, Girvan and Arniston Rangers defender, pictured.

“We’ve played a lot of the bigger clubs recently and were a bit unlucky to lose against BSC last Saturday. I thought a draw was probably a fair reflection.

“Spartans have struggled for consistency this season, so I think it’s a good time to be facing them. It would be great to cause an upset and put all those unwanted stats to bed.

“Hopefully being at home will make a big difference because we’re a better side playing on grass rather than artificial 
surfaces.

“I thought we played some good football for the first hour last weekend, so if we can play like that for an entire 90 minutes then we’ll have a decent chance of getting something from the game.

“For us right now, it’s just about getting that first win because there have been games recently we’ve lost which we probably should have taken points from.

“It seems like when you’re winning games, confidence is high, but when you’re losing games at the bottom of the table it’s the total opposite, everything goes against you.”

Faulds, who has endured an injury-hit season to date, reckons some January reinforcements could signal the start of a much-needed revival.

“Ian (Little) brought a couple of new players in recently and I think he’s working on trying to add a few more this month,” he added.

“The difficult thing is trying to attract the quality at this stage of the season because we definitely have one of the smallest budgets in the league.

“The gaffer has changed the tempo in training and tactically there is more of an emphasis on how we set up, and making ourselves harder to beat.

“We’ve got a run of games coming up against teams round about us that we feel we have a good chance of taking points from, so have a few extra bodies in to boost the squad could give everyone a massive lift.”

Meanwhile, any slip for Spartans could mean fifth-placed Civil Service Strollers leapfrog them in the table if Gary Jardine’s men can out-battle BSC Glasgow at the Indodrill Stadium in Alloa.

BSC have been in tremendous form of late, claiming ten wins from their previous 12 domestic fixtures as they look to edge a step closer to their first ever league title.

In the battle of the two University teams, Edinburgh make the trip to Forthbank to face Stirling, knowing defeat could result in them dropping to tenth place in the league.