31 East Fife FB
HE HAS been in the job less than a week but Stevie Farrell has already targeted two players to help lift Stranraer off the bottom of Scottish League One.

The manager is keen to strengthen his squad and is hoping clearance will come through for a left-sided player ahead of tomorrow's (Saturday) trip to East Fife.
Farrell, who was Stevie Aitken's assistant at Stair Park before moving along with Aitken to Dumbarton, was keeping tight-lipped about the player's identity but was hopeful he would be available for tomorrow's match.

The paperwork is currently being drawn up, with the manager also looking to add some extra firepower up front.

He added: "We are looking at a wide player, another left sided player.

"Willie Gibson and Liam Dick are the only ones we have got and the balance needs to be better in that area.

"I'm looking to add a left sided player and a striker.

"Every club is looking for that number nine and that is proving to be that bit more elusive."

A number of strikers have been spoken to, including Joe Nuttall, whose loan spell finished the day before last weekend's Scottish Cup clash with Aberdeen.
joe 2
The manager returned to the club at the beginning of the week and took his first training session on Tuesday night.

He said: "It's good to be back.

"Obviously, I have got an affinity with the club from my previous time here.

"I enjoyed a successful time here and I hope to replicate it this time.

"It's good to be back and I took the players on Tuesday night and I felt like I had not been away."

Tomorrow's trip to New Bayview offers Farrell his first chance to clinch three points as manager.

It is a ground where Stranraer have a patchy record, with three wins in nine games since the Fifers moved into their new ground.

Methil is a town that has its own Stranraer connections for Farrell though.
Stevie Bell
He said: "My first start with Stranraer all those years ago was a Tuesday night at Bayview.

"We came back with a 1-0 victory and something similar would do me quite well."

In terms of team news, club captain Steven Bell is the only doubt and will undergo a fitness test ahead of tomorrow's match after suffering a back injury.

Farrell sat down with the players on Tuesday night to lay out his plans and vowed to treat them as men, rather than purely footballers.

He added: "I know some of the players I am working with and some of the team were here from the last time.

"Some of the players we have worked against and I know the squad quite well.

"Some of the younger kids I don't know quite as well and it will take a couple of weeks to get to know them and their attributes.

"I'm happy with where we are and I have hopefully added one and will hopefully add another."
4STRANRAER bounced back from being a goal down at the break to rescue a point the last time they met East Fife.

The Blues struggled to find any real rhythm in the opening 45 minutes at Stair Park and conceded midway through the first half. Craig Malcolm lost the ball before the visitors broke away through Kevin Smith. The striker held off the attention of Giuliano Morena before delivering the ball into the box. Steven Bell managed to get something on the cross but it fell perfectly for Ross Brown, whose mishit shot deceived Cameron Belford.

Stranraer were an improved outfit after the break though and forced an equaliser with just over 20 minutes left on the clock. Willie Gibson's corner was perfect for Bell and his header was judged to have crossed the line, despite some desperate defending. The hosts had their tails up and almost snatched all three points but Liam Dick's fierce drive flew just over the bar.
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Last meetings

- 1-1 (Bell; Brown) at Stair Park 22/10/16
- 2-0 (Insall x2) at New Bayview 10/9/16
- 1-0 (Malcolm) at Stair Park 2/8/14
- 1-1 (Austin; Robertson) at New Bayview 5/4/14
- 2-0 (McKenna and Stirling) at Stair Park 4/3/14
Stenny 14 Jan 2017 008
Stranraer's last five games

Aberdeen (A): 4-0
Stenhousemuir (A): 1-0
Alloa Athletic (H): 1-2 (C Thomson)
Queen's Park (A): 0-1 (Gibson)
Airdrieonians (H): 1-2 (Agnew)
East Fife's last five games

Livingston (A): 0-1 (Paterson)
Airdrieonians (A): 2-2 (Kerr and Brown)
Stenhousemuir (H): 1-0 (Robinson)
Livingston (H): 2-1 (Insall and Robinson)
Stenhousemuir (A): 0-1 (O'Hara)
Stenny 14 Jan 2017 002

Last time out

Stranraer lineup v Stenhousemuir: Belford, Barron (Turner 57), Dick, Robertson, Neill, Bell, Agnew, Thomson (Morena 73), Gibson, McGuigan (Wilson 64), Malcolm.
Not used: Maley, Whittaker and Currie.

East Fife lineup v Livingston: Goodfellow, Page, Kerr, Penrice, Slattery, Kane, Brown (Lamont 76), Robinson, Paterson, Smith, Insall (Duggan 82).
Not used: Mutch, Austin and Cordery.

Away supporters' info

Stranraer supporters will be welcome in the lounge and in Jimmy’s Bar on Saturday before and after the match. Both bars will be open from 12.30pm.

SPFL 3L1 6474

1 Arbroath 25 59
2 Raith Rovers 25 43
3 Forfar Athletic 26 43
4 East Fife 23 38
5 Montrose 26 35
6 Airdrieonians 26 31
7 Dumbarton 25 27
8 Stranraer 24 27
9 Brechin City 24 25
10 Stenhousemuir 24 22


2018/19 Squad

1 - Max Currie (GK)
3 - Chris McGowan (DEF)
4 - Andy McDonald (DEF)
5 - David Brownlie (DEF)
6 - Connor McManus (MID)
7 - Mark Lamont (MID)
8 - Kyle Turner (MID)
9 - Joao Victoria (STR)
10 - Ali McCann (MID)

11 - Grant Anderson (M/S)
12 - Ian Smith (MID)

13 - Lyle Avci (GK)
14 - Cameron Elliott (MID)
17 - David Smith (D/M)
18 - Innes Cameron (STR)
20 - PJ Crossan (STR)

22 - Jamie Hamill (DEF)
23 - Adam Cummins (DEF)
24 - Conor O'Keefe (MID)