Lowland League Preview – Matchday 27

It’s preview time. Craig, Martin, Jordan and Ronan are here to take you through this weekend’s action as we approach the business end of the season.


by Craig Edwards

It’s approaching last chance saloon for Whitehill Welfare as they make the trip south to face Gretna 2008.

Whitehill currently sit five points adrift of Dalbeattie Star and safety with only five games remaining but still only have one win to their name this season.

One point from their last five games and a 6-1 defeat away to Kelty Hearts two weeks ago paints a tough picture for Whitehill.

Arguably their best chance of picking up points are this weekend against a Gretna side that have only won twice in their last eleven matches and only scored once in their last four games albeit those games have been against four of the top six.

With five games to go Gretna will still have their sights on a potential top ten finish as they face sides around them in the table.

Gretna have a 100% record against Whitehill this season, a 4-2 league victory at Ferguson Park back in August and a narrow 1-0 win in the South Challenge Cup.

Ones to watch

Gretna 2008 – Daniel Smales

Whitehill Welfare – Kevin Keane

Gala Fairydean Rovers vs East Stirlingshire

by Martin Fleming

It’s a mid-table battle at Netherdale this weekend as ninth place Fairydean host sixth place East Stirlingshire.

The Galashiels side are amongst others who will hope to take advantage of two weeks without a game and grab a crucial three points. Dean Shanks and his men would love a victory as they haven’t taken any points since the start of January when they defeated Edusport Academy 2-1. Managing all three points could see the side jump up to eighth place as they hope to achieve a top half finish in the table.

Shire come off a 2-0 defeat in the South Challenge Cup to Bonnyrigg Rose but will look to get back to winning ways in finding a fifth consecutive league victory. Their last triumph was a 2-0 win over Dalbeattie and if form is anything to go by, Shire will surely go into the game as favourites with the hopes of securing a top six finish.

Ones to watch

Gala Fairydean Rovers – Ruari Paton

East Stirlingshire – Ross Allum

Edusport Academy vs East Kilbride

by Martin Fleming

The league leaders make the trip to Annan to face eighth place Edusport Academy hoping for another victory to take another step closer to the title.

Ricky Waddell’s Edusport had their last league outing against Cumbernauld Colts and will hope to make the most of their refreshed squad after last weekend off. The Edusport team continue to climb back into mid-table thanks to results such as their 2-2 draw with Colts at Broadwood. Their first win in months came a few weekends ago with a 2-1 victory over relegation fighters Dalbeattie Star. The side could capitalise on what has been improving form over a leading team who haven’t had the luxury of a week off.

Kilby on the other hand, come off a huge 7-0 victory over Coldstream in the South Challenge Cup. Stuart Malcolm’s men are only games away from officially clinching the Lowland League title and will hope games like these will bring another three points. A win in Galabank could see the side grab their sixth consecutive victory cementing their dominance and a firmer grasp on first place.

Ones to watch

Edusport Academy – Jack Breslin

East Kilbride – David Proctor

Spartans vs Kelty Hearts

by Jordan Robertson

The Friday night football in the Lowland League sees Spartans take on Kelty Hearts.

The hosts are eight points behind Kelty, however a win will bring them within distance as they still have a game in hand to play.

The last time both these sides met it was an even contest that finished 1-1. However, the visitors are in tremendous form just now and are unbeaten in eight games and have won their last four on the bounce, scoring a whopping 16 goals in the process. Spartans have won their last three games, so it is set to be a cracker.

Whilst Spartans will fancy their chances, they know they will have to keep Kelty talisman Stuart Cargill quiet. The forward has 16 goals already this campaign and will be aiming to add more on Friday night.

Ones to watch

Spartans – Stephen MacDonald

Kelty Hearts – Stuart Cargill

Vale of Leithen vs BSC Glasgow

by Jordan Robertson

Vale of Leithen have a chance to overtake both Gala Fairydean Rovers and Edusport Academy in the Lowland League table if they can overcome a strong BSC side.

The home side have been plagued by inconsistency this season and lost last time out against Civil Service Strollers whereas visiting side BSC are the exact opposite of Vale.

They have not been beaten in the league since August, when they lost out narrowly to Kelty Hearts, so Vale know they will be in for an incredibly difficult afternoon. However, they know they do have players that can hurt BSC if given a chance. Sean Stewart was the club’s player of the season last term and he has 11 goals so far this campaign. Vale fans will be hoping he can help record a great result on Saturday.

Ones to watch

Vale of Leithen – Sean Stewart

BSC Glasgow – Euan O’Reilly

Civil Service Strollers vs University of Stirling

by Ronan Alexander

Fifth place Strollers welcome tenth place University of Stirling in a match where there could be goals galore between the two free-flowing sides.

Strollers have won their last two matches scoring four goals on each occasion and have only lost one of their last 12 league encounters which was a narrow 2-1 defeat to league leaders East Kilbride last month.

For Chris Geddes’ side, they went six league games post-Christmas unbeaten in a run that included five draws. However, that unbeaten run was brought to a halt by Vale of Leithen as the students saw two penalty kicks saved. Last weekend they got back to winning ways after a thrilling cup tie which saw the Uni triumph 5-3.

The crowd is set to be boosted by the ‘Lowland League Catchup’ team and they will be meeting at the Doo’cot Pub from lunchtime for anyone willing to join before enjoying the match.

Ones to watch

Civil Service Strollers – Kerr Allan

University of Stirling – Blair Lyons

Cumbernauld Colts vs Edinburgh University

by Ronan Alexander

Two out of form teams meet at Broadwood on Saturday with both club’s aiming to get back to winning ways.

Colts are winless in four but have picked up two consecutive draws recently and three points on Saturday could see them leapfrog East Stirlingshire to sixth in the table. Their last outing was a 2-2 draw with Edusport where the dangerous strike-force of Fraser Team and Sean Brown were both on the score-sheet. The pair have scored 17 league goals between them and 22 in all competitions.

Dorian Ogunro’s side haven’t won in the league since November meaning they’ve failed to collect three points in their last 10 games which has saw them drop to 12th in the table after their excellent early season form. They have shown glimpses of those performances at the beginning of the campaign including a 2-2 draw with BSC Glasgow last month.

Ones to watch

Cumbernauld Colts – Fraser Team

Edinburgh University – Max Condie