A play-off place must be the very minimum

Stephen Hughes celebrates his opener.
Stephen Hughes celebrates his opener.

The opportunity to battle for East Fife’s League One survivial in the play-offs, at the very least, must become the club’s main priority.

That’s according to Methil boss Gary Naysmith who watched his side slip four points adrift of eighth placed Airdrie at the weekend.

The two will meet this Saturday, with defeat meaning the Fifers would look odds on to again compete in the end of season nail biter.

However, after their win on Saturday, bottom place Arbroath now also sit just four points behind East Fife.

It’s vital, Naysmith said, that the Red Lichties are given no chance to overhaul his side.

On Saturday a controversial injury time penalty doomed the Fifers.

Naysmith said: “Arbroath had a great result so first and foremost, before we start targeting Airdrie and Brechin, we have to make sure that at the worst we’re going to be in the play-offs.

“I’m very disapointed that we were 1-0 up (against Stenhousemuir) and attacking their goal but within six seconds giving away a penalty at the other end.

“The ref is to blame, but he’s only partly to blame.

“We need to be more intelligent and aware ourselves to say in the 94th minute that if we’re not going to get the win, at least we’ll get a draw.

“That would have kept Arbroath at five points and Airdrie and Brechin still only three points ahead with the two of them to play.”

The boss will go into Saturday’s game hoping his side can cut out the individual errors which are cosing them dear.

On Saturday Sean Dickson was allowed a free header at goal to equalise from a set-piece.

“Just mark your man at the corner,” said the boss.

“It’s the individual mistakes that are costing us.”

East Fife’s injury list is beginning to settle with Joe Mbu, Gary Fisher, David Cowan and Scott McBride all returning.