L09 Dumbarton W

IN ONE corner, a former Stranraer midfielder and manager and the current boss of Dumbarton.

In the other corner, a former Dumbarton assistant manager and the current boss of Stranraer.

It would be easy to suggest there was more focus on the opposing dugouts tomorrow (Saturday) at Stair Park.

However, Stevie Farrell is preparing for the tie with Dumbarton just like any other game, despite his friendship with former Stranraer boss Stevie Aitken.

He said: “It is just another game with three points at stake.

“We have prepared like any other game.

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“We will not be the first friends or the last friends sitting in opposite dugouts.

“He is Dumbarton focused and I am Stranraer focused and we are both trying to get three points and that is the way it will be.

“We catch up regularly on the phone most weeks and analyse each other’s game and help each other.

“We bounce things off each other but this week it has been a bit quiet as you can imagine!”

Farrell, who was assistant under Aitken at Stranraer before following him to Dumbarton in 2015, wanted his former colleague to be successful but not tomorrow.

He said: “Tomorrow, it is about our own football clubs.

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“Tomorrow, it is about trying to get three points.”

Again, Stranraer will be without Mark Lamont, although the midfielder returned to training last night (Thursday).

The former Dumbarton midfielder has not featured since coming off the bench at Airdrie on September 1 due to a troublesome ankle injury.

The international break should allow Lamont to get back up to speed and hopefully ready for October 20 and the trip to Raith Rovers.

Farrell said: “He has been carrying the injury through the close season and through pre-season.

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“At a new club, he did not want to down tools too early and that went against him.

“He has been playing with the injury from the outset.”

Despite Lamont’s injury, the manager has a number of options, particularly in the midfield and up front, to choose from.

Max Ashmore and Cameron Elliott missed out at Brechin last weekend while Grant Anderson, Luke Donnelly and PJ Crossan all came off the bench.

The manager added: “We are blessed with options.

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“You want a strong squad where everybody is competitive.

“If you are not performing somebody is chapping the door trying to take your jersey and that is good, that is healthy.”

Last meeting
Dumbarton 2-1 Stranraer
6 October 2017

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THE Sons came out on top exactly 12 months ago to the day when Dumbarton hosted Stranraer in the IRN-BRU Cup.

Absences meant Ryan Thomson started up front, with Max Currie given the nod over Cameron Belford.

The home side took the lead through Craig Barr with only 12 minutes on the clock before they were forced into a change of their own when goalkeeper Scott Gallacher limped off to be replaced by Jamie Ewings.

It was game over midway through the second half when Tom Walsh crossed for former Blue Mark Stewart to head home.

Stranraer pushed to get something out of the game but their goal would come too late for a comeback. Stephen Okoh scored his first for the club with the last kick of the ball.

One other notable incident saw the debut of promising under 20s midfielder Cameron Elliott.

Dumbarton: Gallacher (Ewings 32), McLaughlin, Dowie, Wardrop, Hutton, Barr, Wilson, Walsh, Froxylias, Gallagher (Nade 58), Stewart (Roy 79).
Not used: Smith, Hill, Johnston and Prior.

Stranraer: Currie, Robertson, Dick, Neill, Hamill, Woods (Elliott 83), Bell, Agnew (Okoh 73), Anderson, Turner (Stoney 75), Thomson.
Not used: Barron, Lang, McGowan and Belford.
 
Last five meetings

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Dumbarton 2 Stranraer 1 (Barr and Stewart; Okoh) at The C&G Systems Stadium on October 6, 2017
Stranraer 1 Dumbarton 0 (McGuigan) at Stair Park on September 3, 2016
Stranraer 3 Dumbarton 2 (McKeown x2 and Winter; Kirkpatrick and Gilhaney) at Stair Park on July 26, 2014
Stranraer 4 Dumbarton 2 (Winter, Grehan and Aitken x2 (Pen x1); Fleming and Smith) at Stair Park on July 27, 2013
Dumbarton 0 Stranraer 1 (Tade) at The C&G Systems Stadium on March 29, 2008

Last five games

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Stranraer

DRAW v Brechin (A): 1-1
LOSS v East Fife (H): 0-2
WIN v Stenhousemuir (H): 2-0 (Turner and Cameron)
LOSS v Airdrieonians (A): 2-0
WIN v Montrose (H): 2-0 (Brownlie and Anderson)

Dumbarton

LOSS v Raith Rovers (H): 1-5 (Gallagher)
DRAW v Airdrieonians (A): 1-1 (Spencer)
WIN v Montrose (H): 2-1 (Dowie and Forbes (P))
LOSS v Montrose (H): 0-1
LOSS v Stenhousemuir (A): 2-1 (B Barr)

Last time out

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Stranraer lineup v Brechin City: Currie, Higgins (Donnelly 55), McDonald, Brownlie, D Smith, Hamill, Cummins, McManus, Turner, Cameron (Anderson 71), Layne (Crossan 55).
Not used: McGowan, I Smith, Diver and Avci.

Dumbarton lineup v Raith Rovers: McGowan, Dyer (Loy 81), Dowie, Perry, Hutton (Russell 46), Forbes (Gallagher 69), Barr, Spencer, Allardice, Thomson, Aitchison.
Not used: Adam.

Referee

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NOVEMBER 18, 2017, was the last time Barry Cook visited Stair Park and it is not a date any Stranraer fan will want to remember.

The referee took charge of the Blues’ home tie with Brora Rangers in the Scottish Cup. Steven Mackay scored a last minute winner for the Highland League team, who went on through to the next round. Less than 12 months on from that game, just two of the team that started that day remain at Stair Park: Jamie Hamill and Grant Anderson.

Mr Cook took charge of five Dumbarton games last term, with the Sons losing three and drawing two.

The last encounter came at the end of March this year when Livingston visited tomorrow’s opponents. Lee Miller, Ryan Hardie and Raffaele De Vita all scored for the visitors before Aidan Wilson was sent off.

The last encounter away from Dumbarton came at Palmerston Park where the spoils were shared. There were no goals and indeed only one yellow card in a drab affair.
 
Photos: Stranraer FC, Bill McCandlish

It's three weeks until our next home fixture - we face Arbroath at Stair Park on Saturday 27 October.

L11 Arbroath W

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POS
TEAM PLD
PTS
1 Arbroath 17 45
2 Raith Rovers 17 32
3 East Fife 17 26
4 Forfar Athletic 17 24
5 Montrose 17 21
6 Airdrieonians 17 20
7 Stranraer 16 20
8 Dumbarton 17
18
9 Brechin City 16 16
10 Stenhousemuir 17 15


Fixtures

2018/19 Squad

1 - Max Currie (GK)
2 - Daniel Higgins (DEF)

3 - Chris McGowan (DEF)
4 - Andy McDonald (DEF)
5 - David Brownlie (DEF)
6 - Connor McManus (MID)
7 - Mark Lamont (MID)
8 - Kyle Turner (MID)
10 - Luke Donnelly (STR)
11 - Grant Anderson (M/S)
12 - Ian Smith (MID)

13 - Lyle Avci (GK)
14 - Cameron Elliott (MID)
16 - Max Ashmore (MID)
17 - David Smith (D/M)
18 - Innes Cameron (STR)
19 - Ciaran Diver (STR)
20 - PJ Crossan (STR)

22 - Jamie Hamill (DEF)
23 - Adam Cummins (DEF)