NEW YEAR CRACKER!

Ayr v Raith - SFL1'Monday, December 26'2011
Ayr v Raith - SFL1'Monday, December 26'2011
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RAITH Rovers will put a difficult year behind them and look to get 2012 off to the perfect start when Dundee first foot at Stark’s Park on Monday.

The January 2 clash is expected to draw Rovers’ biggest home crowd of the season, with the Kirkcaldy side looking for the win that will lift them further away from the First Division relegation zone.

Manager John McGlynn told SportsPress: “It’s always a special game at New Year.

“You anticipate a big crowd because everyone is off their work, and since Dundee are going well I’m sure they’ll bring a lot of fans down.

“Hopefully the windy weather dies down and we get decent playing conditions, and a cracking match.”

Rovers go into the match boosted by two good away results – a win at Partick before Christmas and a draw at Ayr on Boxing Day – while Dundee’s seven-game unbeaten run came crashing to a halt as they ended 2011 with a home defeat to Morton.

McGlynn said: “It would’ve been nice to get six points from our last two games as it would have made a big difference, but we’re fairly satisfied with four points from six.

Qualities

“Now we look to build on that and get a wee run going. We had to battle and hang on in the second half at Ayr, and these are qualities that you have to show in this league.

“Since we last played Dundee they’ve went on a great run, albeit they lost to Morton on Monday. That could be their kick up the backside, or maybe they’ve just been brought back down to earth, which opens the door for us to go and take the points at home.

“In both previous games we were unlucky to lose to them. Up at Dens we missed the best chance of the game just before Dundee scored, and there’s no way we deserved to lose the game at Stark’s Park.

“We felt a bit hard done by in those games, so this is the opportunity for us to turn it around and get a victory.”

The match could be the farewell for Rovers’ six on-loan players, with Stephen Reynolds confirmed as returning to St Johnstone, although McGlynn is hopeful that extensions can be agreed with at least some of the five players he has on loan from Hearts.

“We’re still not sure where we stand,” he said. “We’re waiting to find out from Hearts what they are wanting to do. It could be their last game, and we’ll just have to pick up the pieces if that’s the case.

“It’s been beneficial to us having a bigger squad to choose from, especially on Monday there when Iain Davidson goes off leaving us six players down.”