East Region Preview – 06.05.17

Preview by Mark Johnson

East Region Preview 6th May 2017

This weekend sees a mixture of Cup and League action across the region.

 D J Laing East of Scotland Cup 3rd Round

Carnoustie Panmure who secured their Super league status in midweek following Camelon’s heavy defeat at the hands of ten man Bo’ness United, welcome title contenders Bonnyrigg Rose to Laing Park as both sides take a break from the league to play their long-awaited East of Scotland Cup Third Round tie.

With the visitors slipping up in midweek they are expected to to throw everything at their title challenge which may mean Rose boss, Robbie Horn will make changes to his side. Panmure boss Alan McSkimming doesn’t have that option as he has players missing on holiday so he will wait to see who is actually available on the morning of the game before being able to name his side.

 D J Laing East of Scotland Cup Quarter Final

Whitburn know that 2 points will probably save them from relegation but three points will definitely do it and the Lothian side could be forgiven for seeing their East of Scotland Cup Quarter Final as an unwanted diversion, however, that is far from the truth. The home side who face Dundee North End see the game as a great chance to earn a place in the Semi Finals of the regions top Cup competition. North End will be stern opponents as they have lost just the one game under new boss Ross Lunan and will also see the game as a chance of a Semi Final so an exciting encounter is expected. The North End manager is without Ross Sievewright, Euan McIlvenny and Robbie George.

 The Conservatory Convertors Fife & Lothian Cup Quarter Final

Super League leaders make the trip south to take on Tranent in the Fife & Lothians Cup Quarter Final. The Lothian side limbered up for the big game with an impressive victory at promotion chasing Sauchie in midweek so will be full of confidence and have nothing to lose against their top flight big boys. Tam Courts Kelty side are chasing a treble and will be looking to book their place in the Semi Final so is expected to limit any changes to the side that beat Bo’ness United last weekend.

 McBookie.com East Super League

Earlier in the season the clash between Bo’ness United and Penicuik Athletic would have been a juicy prospect but both sides have had dips in form in recent time. United have regained their form and enjoyed a convincing win at Camelon in midweek while Penicuik were drawing at Fauldhouse United. With third place at stake then both sides will be expected to put out strong sides and won’t want to surrender third place without a fight. 

Mathematically, Hill of Beath require two points to make sure they are safe but there are certainly easier places to go that Broxburn Athletics Albyn Park, Athletic have had another exceptional season and have the possibility of a top five finish. Both sides are free of suspensions although Shaun Leishman plays his last game before a two-game ban. 

A big game for Jeanfield Swifts as they travel to take on relegated Fauldhouse United at Park View. Last week’s win at Carnoustie has given the Perth side a real chance of survival, three wins from their five games would secure safety, however, two of those games are against Bonnyrigg Rose. Fauldhouse will be without Player Manager Jon Connolly who misses the game through suspension but Jeanfield have Lee Deans available before he starts a two-game ban. 

Only bragging rights on offer at Thomson Park as Lochee United face Broughty Athletic but with players on either side who have played for both its likely to be a tasty affair. Broughty boss Keith Gibson will doubtless have asked for a reaction from his side following their thrashing at home to Broxburn last week. Gibson is expected to make changes, one of which will be the return of Jamie McCunnie who missed last week’s defeat. Lochee boss George Shields is without Connor Birse, Graham Hay, Darren Clarkson and Scott Webster. 

A massive game for both Musselburgh and Linlithgow Rose at Olivebank as both teams fight to avoid relegation. It seems bizarre to see Linlithgow in the bottom two but only two league wins since the beginning of September tells its own story. Their position cost Todd Lumsden and Stevie Hislop their jobs on Tuesday night and Interim boss Alan Millar couldn’t stop the run when they went down 1-0 at Hill of Beath on Wednesday night. 

 McBookie.com East Premier League

In the Premier League, defeat for Dundee Violet at home to Haddington Athletic will see their relegation confirmed alongside Armadale Thistle and once again they have a hefty injury list. Barry Wilson, Aaron Kane, Ciaran Conway and Connor McLeod all miss out. 

Across the City at Downfield Park, the home side host Arniston Rangers with nothing but pride at stake. Paul Marrs side would complete the double over the visitors with a win but is without Mark Bannon and Craig Smith. 

Sauchie will be hoping for a reaction after their defeat at home to Tranent on Wednesday night as they play host to Tayport. Whilst the home side have games in hand, they can’t afford to lose many more. Tayport boss John Ovenstone has called for his side to stake a claim for a shirt in the GA Cup Final. “We only have this game and then Downfield for them to stake a claim for a Cup Final place so that is an added incentive. We created 29 chances last weekend against Glenrothes but didn’t convert one of them and I want to see those chances hit the back of the net.” 

 McBookie.com East North League

Brechin Vics were buoyed by last weekend’s 3-1 win at Arbroath Vics and Manager Wayne Morrison has the same squad available for the visit of Blairgowrie. Billy McKay is in no such position and has to deal with several absentees through work commitments. 

Scone Thistle make the trip to Forfar Albion as massive favourites, especially after Albion’s 13-0 defeat at the hands of Luncarty last time out. Ross McCleary misses the game for the home side through suspension. 

Kinnoull will be without Greg Whyte through injury and Rhys Davies faces a late fitness ahead of their game at home to Arbroath Vics at Tulloch Park. Vics are without Steve Florence, Ryan Lewsi and Mark walker through injury while Conor Gray faces a fitness test. However, they are boosted by the return of Kyle Findlater. 

Kirriemuir Thistle know that a win for them at home to Coupar Angus will see them promoted to the Premier League and with the usual squad of players available it is difficult to make a case for anything otherwise. The visitors are without the suspended Murray Irvine. 

East Craigie will be looking to keep the pressure up on Thornton Hibs as the Dundee side travel to Lochore Welfare. The Shipbuilders will be confident of taking all three points and have no injury worries ahead of the trip to Fife. 

Luncarty will be hoping to put a dent in Thornton Hibs promotion bid as they host the Fife side. Jonny Kelly hopes his side can take confidence from last week’s clinical demolition of Forfar Albion as they take on the promotion favourites. 

Newburgh are looking for a new manager and their first win of the year as they welcome Lochee Harp to East Shore Park. Harp boss Michael Gormley will once again have to rejig his pack as Darren Brown is unavailable, Mark Kelly and Graeme Dailly are unavailable while Connaire Connelly is suspended, a positive though is the return of Gordon Ramsay and James Cochrane. 

 McBookie.com East South League

In the South League the game between Edinburgh United and Stoneyburn has been switched to New Victoria Park, the home of Newtongrange Star. 

Dunbar United know that a win at Livingston United will confirm them as champions of the South League. 

Promotion for Pumpherston is now not going to happen after they occupied one of the top two places for so long but they will be looking to end the season on a high with victory at home to fourth placed Lochgelly Albert. 

 Kick offs   2.30pm

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