Fife unleash the full force

East Fife swatted away the Wasps thanks to Greg Hursts second half strike on Saturday. Picture by George McLuskie.
East Fife swatted away the Wasps thanks to Greg Hursts second half strike on Saturday. Picture by George McLuskie.

Saturday’s visit to Gayfield may see Darren Young’s Fifers take to the field at virtually full strength.

The boss didn’t have his troubles to seek across pre-season, missing several key players through injury while Young worked hard behind the scenes to bring new recruits in.

But at the weekend there was certain signs that those troubles are consigned to the past, with a strong starting XI lining up to face Alloa Athletic, backed up by a powerful looking bench.

The Fifers racked up their first win of the new league season at the weekend, a Greg Hurst strike enough to secure the points.

Things look like they’ll get even better for the club on Saturday when they meet Dick Campbell’s League Two winners.

Boss Young told the Mail on Monday that he expects more of his regular first team starters to be back in contention for the match, while Kyle Wilkie was expected to start last night’s Irn-Bru Cup tie with Peterhead.

The Methil boss said: “I was really pleased with the way we passed the ball and how we defended at the weekend.

“We then took our chance well and it’s great for me to see us win a game like that with four or five guys who are still to come back in the stand.

“This weekend we could have Jonathan Page, Chris Kane and Mark Lamont to pick from so we’re beginning to look really strong.

“The competition is there now and the guys all have to be on their toes.

“It’s going to be a bit of a headache for me but it’s one I’m quite happy to have.”

That would leave just club skipper Kevin Smith to return from his long term injury as the Fifers go in the early stages of the league campaign with strength in depth.

That was clear to see at the weekend, with the side having the likes of Wilkie and Kyle Wilson available to call on from the bench.

Running with a smaller squad and various injuries to key players deprived the side of that at times last season, but there’s little doubt now that Young has a squad capable of coping with the best in the division.

“I thought Greg Hurst looked really good for us,” said the boss.

“He’s strong and has a knack of being in the right place at the right time which you could see by his goal.

“He can play out wide as well so is another player who gives us a few options.”

Those options were increased further ahead of the Alloa game when Young signed former Clyde left back Scott Linton.

“He’s a great signing for us,” said the boss.

“Scott has had a bit of an injury but is over that and has been in training with us.

“He can see what we’re trying to do at the club.

“He’s trained really hard and wants to do well.”

Attention turns to Gayfield this weekend, with Young expecting a difficult 90 minutes from Campbell’s side.

“They’ve recruited well over the summer,” said the manager.

“They’ll be very hard to beat but with the players we have coming back now we can be confident.”

With Page, Lamont and Kane all in contention, Smith remains out for the Fifers.