BAYVIEW boss John Robertson has issued a challenge to his side’s fringe players to force their way into his top team plans.
The Methil side leapt up to fourth in the league following Saturday’s hard-earned 1-0 home win over Stirling Albion.
Ryan Wallace’s late winner came after the manager had brought on forward Paul McQuade to replace Robert Ogleby, and Robertson said he now wants to see the likes of the former St Mirren man push their way into contention.
He said: “Paul has come on and has been a good impact player for us, but what he really needs are a couple of 90- minute games.
“We started the season with a 19-man squad, so we know that, on a Saturday, there will be three disappointed players so it’s important that the players who do make the bench realise that, if they come on, they have to make a contribution.
“At the moment it’s Lloyd Young and Stevie Campbell, with Scott Dalziel being injured, who are being left out.
“But it’s up to them to push themselves into the team.
“We organised a game against Hill o’ Beath last week for the fringe players and they lost the match 2-0, so we told them that that’s not enough.”
The Fifers were due to play Kilmarnock in the Scottish Communities League Cup quarter finals as the Mail went to press on Monday.
The manager revealed he has had Killie watched three times, and expected his side to “be positive” against the SPL men.
Robertson told the Mail that he didn’t think the winning goal was ever going to come on Saturday, especially after watching as Rob Ogleby had a penalty kick saved and then had another effort turned on to the crossbar by Stirling ‘keeper Sam Filler.
Despite his misses, the manager says he’s been pleased with the contribution made by the Welsh U-21 international so far this term.
He said: “Big Rob has been terrific for us.
“The hard thing for him is that, when the rest of the players have been able to get a break, he’s been on international duty.
“Nothing really went right for him on Saturday, but we’ve told him not to be too down about it because he’s here to learn.”
This weekend attention will turn to Saturday’s visit to Airdrie, who sit just one place behind the Fifers.
The manager says he hopes the side’s recent good run of form, which has seen them win three games back-to-back, can continue.
He said: “The top three teams in the league have shown a bit of consistency while everybody else has been beating each other. It’s important that we go there and make sure we get something.
“It’d be wonderful if we could go there and get the win, but it’s not ideal to be going into the game straight after playing Kilmarnock.”
Scott Dalziel will miss the trip to Airdrie but David Muir should feature.