The two form teams in Scottish League Two go head-to-head with manager John Coughlin under no illusions that it would be a ‘big, big result’ if the ‘Gers could get something over newly crowned champions East Fife.
The Methil men have lost just twice since Boxing Day, opening up a seven-point gap between themselves and Clyde in second place, and Coughlin says his players are keen to put on an impressive showing for the fans in the last home match at Shielfield Park this season.
“We were kicking and battering into each other on Thursday night at training and I have to ensure that players are doing their level best,” he said. “We’ve got a much improved home record over the second half of the season and it’ll be a feather in the cap if we can beat the league champions.
“They are quite rightly champions as they’ve been the best team in the league all season and, regardless of what’s at stake, it’ll be a big, big result if we can get the win.
Fans are reminded that the club’s Player of the Year award presentations will take place from around 5pm in the Black & Gold social club, opposite the main entrance of the ground. All are welcome and are also invited to the Sponsor’s Lounge from 6.30pm onwards.
Berwick Rangers Team News:
Berwick will be without Callum Crane who picked up a red card in last weekend’s dramatic 2-1 victory over Arbroath, while Sandy Cunningham won’t be seen in a Berwick shirt again this season after sustaining a dislocated shoulder at East Stirlingshire.
Aside from that, Coughlin has a full squad at his disposal, although he did admit that some players were carrying knocks and there could be a ‘shuffling of the pack’. Michael McKenna, scorer of the winner at Gayfield, will be available but will miss the final league game of the season at Montrose through suspension after picking up his 15th yellow card of the season.
East Fife Team News:
East Fife expect to have a full squad available to them for their trip to Shielfield Park. Speaking to East Fife’s official website on Friday, player-boss Gary Naysmith declared that despite securing the league title, his team are coming to Shielfield Park in search of a victory.
“We’re on 61 points now so we want to get to 67, we want to get to the end of the season having had only two defeats since Boxing Day. We want as many clean sheets in a row as we can, we want to try and help Fash [Nathan Austin] become the top goalscorer in the league.
“We know we’ve got a difficult game against Berwick, if you look at the last six games we’re both the form teams in the league.
“It’s going to be a tight game I would imagine, so hopefully it is an enjoyable game. There’s no pressure on either team so we can go out and have a real go.”
Match admission is as normal for the final home clash of the season. Fans will be able to purchase replica shirts at discounted prices (£10 child away, £15 child home, £20 adult away) prior to and immediately following the game.
Adult – £12
Concession – £6
SPFL sponsors Ladbrokes have yet again priced the ‘Gers as underdogs for this one despite losing just once in ten games and remaining unbeaten at Shielfield in 2016.
Berwick Rangers – 23/10
Draw – 14/5
East Fife – 11/10
Steven Kirkland is the man attributed to taking charge of this one, and he’ll be assisted by both Dougie Potter and Thomas Clark.
Enjoy the match!