So its just a short 4 days after the replay loss to Annan Athletic and we have a bit of deja-vu – We’re travelling back to Galabank in Annan to play Edusport Academy ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caledonian_Braves_F.C. ) – As you can tell Edusport are now the Caledonian Braves and play at Alliance Park in Motherwell as of the 2019/20 season. The scout report has us as stronger with them having just two 3* current ability players, as you would expect for table-toppers versus 12th place, and the season preview had them finishing in 10th so they are there-or-thereabouts. They also haven’t won in October so we will be looking to finish the month off with another 3 points to extend our lead to at least 3 points with a game in hand.
Without Clappers I’ve moved McVitie up into CM as a BWM(S). I’ve kept Devers as the AP and Balfour is the Mezzala – so its a 4-3-2-1 Wide Control Positive. I’ve giving Guthrie a bit more time to show his worth, Mair is back as AML and Faye AMR. We have a game in 3 days hosting Stirling Uni so I’ll be having to rotate and rest a bit again.
We currently have average team cohesion, average dressing room atmosphere and very good managerial support, and 12 out of the 23 players in the 1st team squad support me so the squad itself is evolving from an emotional standpoint. With the 1st of November tomorrow I’ll be running the numbers again to see if we’ve had any more attribute changes. I also think Kev Waugh is skewing the star ratings a lot – My AM suggests he is a current League 1-level player!!!! he definitely seems to be when he plays. Anyway, 3 points await – lets go and get them.
HT Edusport 1 (Thomson 11) Civil Service 2 (Guthrie 5, McVitie 13)
Another bright start, with a lot of possession and Guthrie made it 1-0 in the 5th minute with a lovely header at the back post. Out of nowhere Edusport equalized after a cross found Thomson unmarked in the 6 yard box and he directed the ball home with an outstretched leg. Parity only lasted for 2 minutes; McVitie scored from a well-struck free-kick to make it 2-1 to the Strollers. We maintained the pressure, though Edusport looked dangerous on the breakaway but 2-1 was the score at the half. 60/40 possession and 82% pass completion shows our normal modus operandi, though i’ll be looking for a bit more from the guys in the 2nd half – I think McVitie will be moving back to BWM DM on Support just to shore that part of the field up. Mair is also pretty anonymous – Barras might be coming on soon.
FT Edusport 1 (Thomson 11) Civil Service 2 (Guthrie 5, McVitie 13) Att 106 (2 Away)
A pretty dull 2nd half to be honest. Kieran Balfour picked up a tight groin after an unsightly lunge but we played the ball around nicely and pretty much shut up shop, not allowing Edusport much time on the ball. We looked more composed when McCulloch came on and we reverted to him as DLP so I’ll be going back to that for the next game, with Devers as the Mezzala – trying to unlock that central midfield! 3 Points, top of the league by 4 points, very pleased with the first 3 months of the season.
Anyway, onto Stirling Uni on Saturday, who are currently bottom of the table, so what can possibly go wrong there!!! – Spartans were bottom when they FM’d us but are now 6th 🙂