Training complex can be key to Raith signings

Raith Roversmanager Gary Locke. Pic: Steve Brown
Raith Roversmanager Gary Locke. Pic: Steve Brown

Gary Locke believes Raith Rovers’ state-of-the-art training facilities could be the key to tempting new signings to the club this summer.

Locke has been hugely impressed with the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure complex in Glenrothes that the club uses as its base Monday to Friday.

And the gaffer is prepared to give potential signing targets a tour of the facility to help convince them that their future lies with Rovers.

“It’s the first place I’ll take them because the facilities are fantastic,” he said.

“We certainly can’t have any complaints over preperation for games and the facilities available to us - it’s got everything that we need.

“A lot of players maybe look down at the size of Raith Rovers, but when you show them the training facility and the plans that the directors have got in place, and the ambition of the club, then it opens their eyes.

“We want to try, if possible, to become a Premier League club and the board are certainly making all the right noises behind the scenes about improving the club and making it bigger and better.

“For me, that was one of the reasons that attracted me to the job and hopefully we can all work closely together to make the club bigger and better season by season.

“That all starts with the first team getting success on pitch.”

Raith return to preseason training on June 20 and Locke is prepared to give every player on the books a chance to stake a claim for a place in his side.

“I know the majority of the squad but it will be good to see the lads that I’m not too familiar with, and it’s important that they know they will get an opportunity,” he stressed.

“Ray did a fantastic job here, and I hope to emulate that, but it’s a clean slate for some of the players that maybe didn’t get a regular game.

“Everybody will start a fresh and hopefully we can hit the ground running.”

Locke has enjoyed his first fortnight in the Stark’s Park hotseat but is well aware of the challenge he faces in following on from the success of Ray McKinnon.

“So far there’s not been any pressure because we’re not playing games so that’s been enjoyabe!” he said.

“But no, I’m well aware that we over-achieved last season, and that it’s important we try to do the same this season.

“We know it’s going to be difficult, especially when you look at the teams who are dropping down or coming up- they are all big clubs.

“I’ve really enjoyed it and people at the club have really helped me settle in.

“I get great vibes so far about the collectiveness within the whole football club - everyone just wants the team and club to do well and that’s refreshing for me.

“Hopefully I can reward these people with the success they deserve.”