Gaffer deserves credit for Raith revival

Raith defender Paul Watson insists Grant Murray deserves praise for guiding the team to three wins in a row.
Raith defender Paul Watson insists Grant Murray deserves praise for guiding the team to three wins in a row.

Raith defender Paul Watson insisted that manager Grant Murray deserves credit for turning around the team’s fortunes in recent weeks.

Murray’s position was under scrutiny before Christmas but a run of three successive victories has eased the pressure, pulled Rovers away from the relegation zone, and back into the fight for fourth place.

Rovers revival has co-incided with the arrival of Maurice Malpas, with three wins from three games recorded since the new director of football was appointed.

However, Watson (24), reavealed: “He (Malpas) has not been particularly involved on the training side of it – he’s been there, but in the background.

“I think he’s dealt more with the management and board side of it. He’s not really got involved with us yet.

“I think the manager deserves a bit of praise now.

“He went through a hard patch - and I think there were still some boos on Saturday - but he deserves a pat on the back after three wins in a row.”

Saturday was the first time Raith have had a full squad available this season and Watson believes that the increased competition for places has been a key factor in the team’s revival.

“We’ve got players back from injury and competition for places is big at the minute,” he said.

“You don’t want to lose your jersey so I think that has given the boys the boot up the backside they needed.”

The defender admitted he was relieved to hear the final whistle on Saturday as Dumbarton threatened to come back from 2-0 down to rescue a draw.

“In the first half we were brilliant - probably the best we’ve played all season,” he said. “If we’d got that third goal we might have won by four or five but it wasn’t to be and luckily we held on in the end.

“When we try to pass it and keep it simple that’s when we do really well.

“We just tried to overcomplicate it in the second half, and Davie McGurn made an unbelievable save right at the end so we’ve got him to thank as well.”

Watson is now looking to win it four wins on the trot away to Alloa on Saturday, adding: “It’s a very tough place to go and a tough surface to play on, but we went down there and won earlier in the season.”