Archive for the ‘Seniors Latest News’ Category

SPFL 2: Home crowd backing crucial in push for play-offs

Thursday, April 11th, 2024

The Spartans welcome Stranraer to Ainslie Park on Saturday in the fourth and final meeting between the sides in this inaugural SPFL 2 season.

With only a quartet of games left to play, both sides will be looking to earn maximum points out of the twelve available which may yet define the destination of their ten-month long campaign.

Douglas Samuel’s side come into the fixture on the back of a brace from Blair Henderson on the road at Elgin to earn a draw whilst Saturday’s visitors were edged out by an injury time Jordan Allan effort away at Clyde.

The previous encounters between the side have seen a minimum of three goals scored in each of them, with defender Ayrton Sonkur perhaps the unlikely candidate of topping the goal scoring charts with four goals, including a remarkable injury time winner last time out.

In a call to arms to the Spartan Army faithful, Captain Kevin Waugh said, “We have had great support from the stands at Ainslie Park this season. We really do hear you at games and it makes a massive difference.  It would be superb if we could have another big and vocal home support this Saturday to help us get over the line – and into the play-offs”

Your Spartans team will be joined out onto the pitch by our members from our 2013 Youth side as mascots.

Interesting stat:

The sides are at the ‘good guys’ end of the fouls conceded charts with Stranraer at the ‘top’ on 305 and Spartans next in the charts at 321.

Tale of the Tape:

7th October Stranraer 3-4 Spartans (Craigen, Armstrong, Tapping, Henderson)

23rd December Spartans 3-0 Stranraer (Denholm, Sonkur x2)

17th February Stranraer 1-2 Spartans (Sonkur x2)

This week’s SPFL 2 fixtures:

Dumbarton v Clyde

East Fife v Bonnyrigg Rose

Peterhead v Forfar Athletic

Stenhousemuir v Elgin City

SPFL 2: Sparky McPenalty spot-on for Spartans in win over Loons

Monday, April 1st, 2024

Injury hit Spartans were without defensive trio Kevin Waugh, Jordan Tapping and Callum Booth for the visit of Forfar Athletic whilst there was a return to the bench for Blair Henderson after recovering from a nasty ankle knock sustained at Clyde.

Forfar came into the match on the back of an impressive 11 match unbeaten run and with the tag of draw specialists having totalled 15 in 30 games.

With the threat of a pleasant afternoon breaking out overhead in the capital, James Craigen looked to make hay whilst the sun was shining as he went on an early run towards the Café end in search of an opener.  He appeared to be manhandled on the way however there was nothing on offer from the match official and play swung instead towards the direction of Pilton Avenue.

Danny Denholm was then clattered by Morrison in the middle of the park, much to the Spartans player’s frustration and it earned the Forfar man a yellow card that was to prove costly later in the game.

Blair Carswell required treatment midway through the half after taking a bit of shoe leather to the scone after bravely coming out to smother the ball at the feet of a pressing Forfar fellow.  After a check up from the neck up, The Cat was back on his feet and Mason McCready resumed his spot on in the technical area.

A speculative long-range effort ahead of the oranges from Munro saw the Forfar man look on as the ball continued to rise as it headed towards Carswell’s goal and sailed over the bar.

Half Time: The Spartans 0-0 Forfar Athletic

The second half burst into life ten minutes after the break when Forfar’s Morrison was sent to the sheds after picking up a brace of yellows cards, much to the player’s bemusement as he headed for first dibs on the showers.

The numerical advantage took just eight minutes to bear fruit when Spartans were awarded a penalty after Cammy Russell put on the burners to race into the box, out-foxing Nditi who clipped the heels and the man in the middle didn’t hesitate in pointing to the spot.  Mark McNulty stepped up and duly converted to break the deadlock.

With the game deep into injury time, Forfar launched one final attempt to rescue a point.  Henderson and Nditi, who was in the provisional Tanzania squad for the recent Africa Cup of Nations, came together in the box with the Forfar man going down in instalments.

Nothing was on offer from the match officials, much to the bemusement of the visiting bench who vented their frustrations.  Seconds later the final whistle echoed around the ground and as the Spartans support celebrated a hard-earned victory, the visitors continued their discussions with the officials in the centre circle. 

Full Time: The Spartans 1-0 Forfar Athletic

Attendance: 411

Malt and Hops Man of the Match: Danny Denholm

SPFL 2: Six of the best – Skipper calls for big final push in play-off place hunt

Thursday, March 28th, 2024

The Spartans head into the final six league games of the domestic league campaign in an inaugural season that has whizzed past our collective eyes.  Next up at Ainslie Park are Forfar Athletic. 

Despite missing out in recent games through injury, Kevin Waugh remained focussed on ensuring the side continue over the coming weeks to achieve their play-off goal.  The last five outings have seen battling performances, three draws and to defeats however it’s a return to winning ways that’s firmly on the Captain’s mind.

Earlier in the week, the skipper offered his thoughts ahead of this crucial clash, “Getting back to basics is key to be honest.  We’ve maybe deviated away from that a little bit and maybe changed our style and our approach and maybe played too many shorter passes that we’re not used to playing.  It’s hard to put your finger on it, sometimes results just don’t go your way.

“I actually don’t think the performances have matched the number of points we’ve picked up in the last six weeks or so.  I thought on Saturday at Clyde in the first half we were brilliant but maybe just lacked that cutting edge. Against Dumbarton we just weren’t good enough defensively and last weekend we probably didn’t click going forward, but it’s now about knitting those two parts of the game together and once we do that, we’ve be back to winning ways for sure.

“The Gaffer is keen to constantly remind us that we are just two points off second place.  Let’s not start thinking about how far other people are away from us.  We’re sitting in a good place, a win from propelling ourselves into second spot and that is the aim from all of us over the next six games to achieve that goal.”

The Loons head to North Edinburgh on the back of a 1-1 draw at Elgin City last weekend, their 15th draw of the season so far.  Ray McKinnon’s side sit in 6th spot in a table that not only sees them just ten points off the play-off positions, but only eight away from basement club Clyde, such is the competitive and compelling nature of SPFL 2. 

The Spartans have consistently appeared in the top four since week 8 into their inaugural SPFL 2 campaign whilst Saturday’s visitors have seen them move up three places in the last six weeks.

It all shapes up for yet another SPFL 2 arm-wrestle in a match featuring a number of players who have pulled on the colours of both clubs.

With a win, draw and defeat in the previous three encounters, Waugh knows exactly what’s required to ensure his men take the bragging rights come 4.45pm on Saturday.

“It’ll be yet another tough game against them that’s for sure as they are a well drilled, physical side and a bit threat from set-pieces so we’ll have to be mindful of that.   We managed to get a good point in the bag earlier in the season up there and followed it up with a win the last time we played them here. 

“I thought in the game up there last month it was one of the games we actually had most control but that was a strange game.  We lost three midfielders through injury and had to play the last quarter of the game with 10 men and were unlucky not to pick up something positive from it.

“We’re confident enough.  We know that we’ve got the players in the dressing room that can win any game regardless of who it is home or away as well. 

“We need to make sure that when we playing here, we pick up three points when we’ve got the home crowd behind us.  You’ve also got the astro out there so it’s the opportunity to get the ball down and play. 

“It’s definitely something we need to look at especially if we get ourselves into the play-offs that these home games will be really important to us so we need to make sure that those teams don’t want to come here.”

Kick-off is 3pm. 

Admission prices: Adults £15. Concessions £10. 12-to-16 yo £5. Under 12’s free.

SPFL 2: Share of the spoils in stalemate at Clyde

Sunday, March 24th, 2024

Spartans and Clyde shared the spoils for the third time this season with the final meeting between the sides ending in a 0-0 stalemate at a blustery New Douglas Park.

The theme from Rocky bellowed out the PA as the SPFL 2’s in-form side looked to deliver a knock-out blow in their bid to move off the basement against Douglas Samuel’s play-off hopefuls.

Opening exchanges saw the ball move around like the shan £1.99 fly-away fitba you got as a kid back in the 80s with both sides struggling to get it under control in the hoolie.

Indeed, the first match ball had enough early on in the game as it made its way up the tunnel after a 50-50 involving Blair Carswell left it devoid of its full compliment of air.

A half chance for Spartans after a quarter of an hour played saw Bradley Whyte played in however his inviting cross whizzed along the face of the goal with no takers.

Mark McNulty was then played in but as he looked to set up a shot, the stand-side assistant raised his flag to deny the Spartans striker from opening the scoring.

Jamie Dishington was up next as the visitors looked to forge an opening however his header from a Cammy Russell corner was collected under the crossbar by Brian Kinnear.

With half time on the horizon, Spartans had one final opportunity to break the deadlock with a fine one-touch move up the park and Mark McNulty forced Kinnear into a fine save.

HT: Clyde 0-0 The Spartans

Ian McCall’s side came out of the traps and it took a lively Callum Booth to take the sting out of a cross swung into the box and prod it back legally into the grateful arms of Blair Carswell.

It was Booth once again, along with Carswell who were to perform heroics to somehow combine to prevent the ball from getting over the line as Clyde pressed hard, working the wind that seemed to be swirling in their favour after the interval.

Spartans made a double swap with a quarter of an hour left on the clock with Sam Jones and Danny Denholm swapping for McNulty and Armstrong.

Both sides huff and puffed in the hoolie looking for what proved to be an elusive winner and a point each was deemed sufficient for the respective troubles.

FT: Clyde 0-0 The Spartans

Malt & Hops Man of the Match: Kieran Watson

SPFL 2: Spartans head to Hamilton for clash with Clyde

Friday, March 22nd, 2024

The Spartans head to Hamilton this weekend as the push for the Play-Offs continues as they take on Clyde in the final SPFL 2 fixture between the sides this season.

With two draws and a narrow victory for Douglas Samuel’s side in the previous visit to New Douglas Park in November, it promises to be an encounter where both clubs will be searching for full points to benefit their respective end of campaign agendas.

Spartans continue to remain in the top four where they have been since Match Day 8 in this, the Club’s inaugural season in the SPFL.  Blair Henderson, the division’s top scorer so far this season on 15 goals, will be keen to add to his 100 SPFL goals that were recognised in an interview published online earlier this week.

At the other end, Blair Carswell recently celebrated a century of clean sheets during his Spartans senior career and will be looking to shut out a resurgent Clyde outfit who have narrowed the gap at the foot of the table to just three points. 

Three braces in four games by in-form Jordan Allan sees the Bully Wee striker a clear threat up front and the visitors will be looking to make it double figures in terms of clean sheets.

Aside from Champions-elect Stenhousemuir, it’s impossible with just seven games left to predict where any of the other nine clubs will finish in a table that sees only ten points between 5th and 10th whilst there’s a mere two points between the Play-Off chasing pack.

Match Day Info

Kick-off: 3.00pm

Tickets can be purchased online in advance via the Clyde FC Ticket Store or in person at the Clyde Office on matchday. Clyde recommend advance purchase to avoid the need to queue at the stadium.

Both sets of supporters should enter via turnstiles 1-3 on the right (south-west corner) of the Main Stand or via the Main Door through into the Fanzone.  The Fanzone will be open for home and away supporters from 12.30pm.

Food kiosks are located at pitch level at both ends of the main stand from 2pm until 4.15pm. Please note that kiosks accept cash only.

Clyde’s matchday programme will be on sale, priced at £3.

Live Stream: A live stream PPV will be available worldwide (including UK and Northern Ireland) as UEFA’S blocked broadcasting hours do not apply this weekend. The stream can be purchased through the Ticket Store for £13.68 (including streaming fee).

SPFL 2 card:

Dumbarton v Bonnyrigg

East Fife v Stranraer

Elgin v Forfar

Stenhousemuir v Peterhead

SPFL 2: Spartans ready to Rock against the Sons

Friday, March 15th, 2024

After back-to-back fixtures on the road, The Spartans are back at Ainslie Park to complete their SPFL 2 quartet of fixtures against Dumbarton.

Douglas Samuel’s side remain undefeated against The Sons in their inaugural SPFL season, with the solitary 2-0 victory at home courtesy of goals from Cammy Russell and Bradley Whyte sandwiched in between a pair of stalemates the Rock.

It’s a second top four clash in as many weeks for the North Edinburgh as the race for a Play-Off place continues to offer a rollercoaster ride with just eight fixtures remaining.

The form guide sees Spartans come into the clash with two draws, two wins and a defeat in the last five outings since the sides last met whilst the tourists have lost three on the road with two victories on home soil.

Both sides will be keen to get full points to maintain the gap over East Fife who secured an injury time win last weekend over Stephen Farrell’s men to keep the pressure on the play-off pack.

You can purchase tickets in advance via Fanbase here: https://app.fanbaseclub.com/Fan/Tickets/SelectType?fixtureId=5092

Alternatively pay at the gate is available: Adult – £15, Concession – £10, Under 16’s – £5
Cash and Card are both accepted.

This weekend’s other SPFL 2 fixtures:

Bonnyrigg Rose v Clyde

Forfar Athletic v Stenhousemuir

Peterhead v East Fife

Stranraer v Elgin City