Lowland League: Vale a 'really tough' game for Spartans ; Strollers targeting top six; Bo'ness aim to improve on big pitches
Spartans boss Dougie Samuel admits he and his players are looking forward to some home comforts this weekend.
The two-time Lowland League champions have picked up seven points from a possible nine on their travels recently and face bottom-of-the-table Vale of Leithen at Ainslie Park tomorrow.
The Capital men are currently level on points with Old Firm rivals Celtic and Rangers B, but 11 points adrift of runaway leaders Bonnyrigg Rose, who they fought back to earn a 2-2 draw with at New Dundas Park six days ago.
But Samuel says it will be nice to be back among some familiar surroundings tomorrow. “We're looking forward to playing at home after three consecutive away fixtures," he said.
“We've bounced back well from the Rangers defeat at the start of the December and are keen to keep our recent unbeaten run going.
“We know from our narrow victory down at Innerleithen earlier in the season that we are in for a really tough game. But we are fully focused on staying at the top end of the table."
Elsewhere, Civil Service Strollers will be hoping to cement their position in the division's top six when they head for Shielfield Park to take on Berwick Rangers.
Strollers are ten points better off than eighth-placed Rangers in sixth, however they have played two games more than their opponents.
"We are disappointed to only take a point from our last two games," manager Gary Jardine said.
“Our performance levels have been good so we just need to try and capitalise when we're on top in games. It's a cliche now that there are no easy games in this league and Berwick away is a real tough one.
“They will have us in their sights I'm sure, but if we want to finish in the top six, we need to continue picking up points on the road as well as when we're at home."
Bo’ness United, in 12th place, are away to the University of Stirling at Forthbank.
"We have to do better on bigger pitches,” said boss Max Christie. “There are some massive pitches in the league.
"Big, big pitches and the game can get stretched. At Stirling we need to go and have that athleticism, dynamism and legs to go and get a result.”
There's a bottom-of-the-table clash at Broadwood as Edinburgh University travel to face Cumbernauld Colts.
The students are four points better off than their hosts in 15th.