Goalkeeper David McGurn has called on Raith Rovers fans to help turn Stark’s Park back into the fortress it once was.
Rovers currently have one of the poorest home records in Scottish football having only managed three home league wins in 2014.
Booing has been a feature of recent home matches with a particularly negative atmosphere affecting the most recent draw with Alloa.
The message from McGurn, a firm fans favourite, is that he would like to see a return of the type of backing the team enjoyed before his long injury lay-off.
“The atmosphere is not as good as it used to be,” he said.
“You used to talk to opposition players and they would say that it was intimidating when we would shoot towards the home fans in the second half.
“There was a lot of singing and cheering and it put a lot of pressure on opposition teams.
“We used to score a lot of goals in the second half - a lot of last minute goals - and that was down to the crowd keeping the players going.
“Nowadays it’s a bit different - you don’t hear a lot of singing anymore I don’t think our fans are the only ones though, it’s the same at a lot of grounds.”
McGurn admitted that the players can be affected by the vibes coming from the crowd.
“Fans have a right to boo - they pay their money and even the top class players get booed,” he said.
“We have made mistakes in some games, but what I can say is that they are honest mistakes.
“If the boys weren’t trying then fair enough, but they are all working hard, showing the right attitude and desire to win.
“It’s up to the players to take it on the chin, go forward and try to turn that on its head.
“Does the booing affect them? Some players it might, some it won’t. But when the crowd are singing and cheering it can only encourage them.
“It can spur them on to find that extra energy to make that tackle, or get that cross in - and it puts the opposition off.
“We’ve all got to be together - the manager, players and fans - because we all want the same thing.
“We’re sitting fifth in a strong league so it’s been a good start, we just need to try and kick on.”
While McGurn believes positive support can help the team at home, he refused to blame the Stark’s Park atmosphere for the recent poor run.
“That’s down to the players,” he said. “We should be making it a fortress and making sure no-one leaves with any points.
“You should turn up and play home games without needing to say anything.
“We’ve just not been good enough as individuals or a team and you can’t blame the fans for that.
“But if the atmosphere was buzzing that would help put a bit of fear into the opposition teams - rather than ourselves.”