Lowland League: Points target for Civil Service Strollers boss on welcome return of home fixtures
Civil Service Strollers boss Gary Jardine says he is happy to be back surrounded by home comforts this weekend.
The Capital side host struggling Gretna 2008 at Christie Gilles Park tomorrow following three successive away trips, last Saturday's 3-0 win over Golspie Sutherland in the Scottish Cup first round a highlight.
Strollers have been in fine form this season and are currently third in the Lowland League standings, four points adrift of leaders Bonnyrigg Rose.
"After three games on the road we are delighted to be back home tomorrow," Jardine said. "With a third of the season gone we are delighted with our points return. However, it's not been easy and the players deserve so much credit for the work they have put in to be in the position they are.
"Gretna, like ourselves, have a really young squad and while they will be disappointed with their points return, I saw them recently against Cumbernauld where they scored four that night and posed real problems.
"With four games to go until the half-way point, it would be a great achievement for us to get to 30 points and tomorrow gives us an opportunity to edge closer to that."
Elsewhere, Spartans are also enjoying a fine campaign in fourth – level on points with Strollers – despite last weekend's Scottish Cup exit to Gala Fairydean Rovers.
Ahead of Berwick Rangers' trip to Ainslie Park, manager Dougie Samuel said: "Gala were excellent and deserved to go through – they deserve credit for not allowing us to get a foothold in the game. This weekend is a new game, a different test against my dark horse for the title. We are still missing a few players due to injury and non-availability. However, we will be looking to bounce back."
Bonnyrigg Rose entertain East Kilbride at New Dundas Park.
Meanwhile, Edinburgh University will aim to take care of East of Scotland Premier Division outfit Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale in their Scottish Cup first-round replay at East Peffermill. Last weekend's clash at Ainslie Park finished 2-2 after the students relinquished a two-goal lead. The winners face an away trip to Dunbar United.