Spartans boss Dougie Samuel assesses season after using record number of players

Spartans boss Dougie Samuel is pleased with the progress his side has made this season after using a record number of players due to injuries.

By Neil McGlade
Thursday, 31st March 2022, 3:25 pm
Spartans manager Dougie Samuel says he has used a record number of players this season due to long-term injuries. Picture: Mark Brown
Spartans manager Dougie Samuel says he has used a record number of players this season due to long-term injuries. Picture: Mark Brown

The Ainslie Park outfit have been an ever present in the upper echelons of the Lowland League this term and still have an opportunity to finish runners-up with three fixtures remaining. They are currently fifth, five points adrift of second-placed East Kilbride. And striker Blair Henderson, who joined from Capital rivals Edinburgh City last summer, has had a hugely productive first season in red and white as he is the division's top goalscorer with 27 so far to his name.

But it's last-chance saloon in the club's quest for silverware as they travel to high-flying Jeanfield Swifts of the East of Scotland League Premier Division tomorrow in the quarter-finals of the South Challenge Cup.

"It's been a season containing some excellent performances and results," Samuel explained. "It has been one of the most difficult in terms of coping with long-term unavailability to key players including Blair Carswell, Blair Atkinson, Euan Smith, Michael Allan and Ian McFarland. So, this coupled with Bolo's (Michael Bolochoweckyj) early retirement, we've had to use a record number of players up to this point.

"Creating consistency in team selection and results has eluded us at times. Overall it's been a season where progress has been made as we've remained at the top end of the table throughout, which bodes well for next season.

"Jeanfield are flying just now. Playing them at their place is a huge test and one we are super excited to embrace."