PETROFAC TRAINING CUP FIRST ROUND:
STRANRAER v DUMBARTON
(Saturday, July 26, Stair Park, 3pm)
Stranraer kick off the new season with a repeat of last season's first round tie in the Challenge Cup. Stevie Aitken's men face Dumbarton who were the SPFL's best-placed part-time team last term after finishing fifth in the Championship.
The sides met almost exactly a year ago - with League One Blues running out 4-2 winners on the shores of Loch Ryan. Chris Aitken bagged a brace for Stranraer with Sean Winter and Martin Grehan also on target. The Sons replied through Garry Fleming and Kevin Smith. Stranraer have made a number of new signings this summer who could feature in their 2014-15 opener. Defenders Craig Pettigrew, Barry Russell and Jackson Longridge, along with midfielder Anthony Marenghi and striker Craig Malcolm, all agreed terms with the club.
Aitken said: "It has been a quick turnaround and everybody has worked very hard during the close season. We're raring to go.
"Dumbarton will be very difficult opponents. Credit to them for what they have achieved. They have taken things forward in the last couple of seasons but if we play to our potential then we will be in with a wee chance."
The Blues will be looking to get the home fires burning quickly - with their first three fixtures of the season at Stair Park. Following the visit of Sons, Aitken's troops take on East Fife in the first round of the League Cup before beginning the league campaign at home to Forfar Athletic.
PETROFAC TRAINING CUP FIRST ROUND:
The Blues signed up another two players this week. One familiar face and one not so. Chris Aitken is the familiar face rejoining having come through pre-season and gained some game time as he completes his battle back to fitness following his injury back in December. Chris has already played 96 times for the Blues and will be hoping his delayed century is just around the corner. The new face joining the squad is 19 year old Sam McCloskey. Sam is a left sided midfielder who has featured in most of the pre-season fixtures as well as having guested for the Blues in bounce matches last season. Sam arrives from the prolific production line at Kilmarnock based Bonnyton Thistle that has produced many players over the years, Mark Campbell & John Robertson to name but two.
Stranraer can also announce that both Kieron Maxwell and Kieren Wood have decided to look for offers elsewhere and have not accepted the offer made to them from the club. We would like to wish both youngsters well and thank them for their efforts for the Blues.
Stranraer will be playing in the Petrofac Training Cup next season after Petrofac Training Services was today named as the new title sponsor of the SPFL’s challenge cup tournament. Find out much more in this announcement, issued today…
The Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) today (Tuesday 1st July) announce that they have reached agreement with Petrofac Training Services, a leading offshore oil and gas training provider, to become the new title sponsor of its challenge cup competition.
The draw in full is:
Queen of the South v Elgin City
Brechin City v Dumbarton
Dunfermline Athletic v Annan Athletic
Queen's Park v Rangers
Greenock Morton v Berwick Rangers
Montrose v Falkirk
Raith Rovers v Forfar Athletic
Albion Rovers v Livingston
Hamilton Academical v Arbroath
East Stirlingshire v Ayr United
Dundee v Peterhead
Clyde v Cowdenbeath
Stranraer v East Fife
Airdrieonians v Stenhousmuir
Alloa Athletic v Stirling Albion
Individual Match Price 2014/15