Raith under pressure from teams below

3212015 SSFF raith rovers 'Grant Murray - Raith Rovers individual head shots - at Starks Park, Kirkcaldy
3212015 SSFF raith rovers 'Grant Murray - Raith Rovers individual head shots - at Starks Park, Kirkcaldy
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RAITH Rovers manager Grant Murray wants his players to forget about the league table and focus on winning games.

The weekend defeat to Livingston saw Raith miss a chance to close the gap to the top three, and such is the competitive nature of the first division, they are now under pressure from the teams below.

However, Murray is only concerned with claiming three points against a resurgent Hamilton Accies side at Stark’s Park this Saturday.

“The way this league is you’re never going to predict results,” Murray told the Press.

“Dumbarton have been at the bottom of the table for a long time but now they are the form team.

Dropping

“Teams at the top are dropping points, and it’s tightning up in the bottom half.

“No team wants to look over their shoulder.

“You just want to concentrate on winning games rather than what’s going on behind you.

“I’ve got to be wary of it as a manager, but I want the players to be thinking postiively about what they can achieve by winning games.

“If they win games, they won’t drop positon in the table.”

With just one win in their last eight league games Raith are a team searching for form, although they beat Hamilton in both previous meetings this season.

“That’s one thing we can use as a positive,” Murray said.

“That can only help the players confidence going into the game.

Wary

“On the other hand, we’ve got to be wary of Hamilton, they are a good footballing team.

“They maybe didn’t start the seaosn as well as they would have liked, but they’ve picked up momentum now.

“I watched them myself and if you allow them to play, they will play.”

Simon Mensing will miss the match through suspension but Murray has no other selection concerns.

Top scorer Brian Graham has yet to attract any transfer window bids, despite topping the first division scoring chart on 20 goals.

Meanwhile, Murray is encouraged by the current proposals on the table to restructure Scottish football.

“I’m open to it,” he said. “There’s been lots of ideas going about over the years, but we’ll never know until we try something.

“We need some kind of change to freshen it up – something that will bring more supporters through the gates and more revenue into clubs.”

Rovers have released young defender Colin Wilson after his contract expired last week.

Wilson signed a six-month deal in the summer after coming through the Raith Academy but made just one first team appearance in a 3-1 defeat to Dunfermline in September.

Manager Grant Murray explained: “His opportunities were going to be limited so we felt between us that he needed to find first team football.”

MATTHEW ELDER

Twitter: mattelder_ffp