Boss happy and ex-Ger set to join the ranks

Craig Johnstone is mobbed after pulling East Fife level. Pic: Kenny McKay.
Craig Johnstone is mobbed after pulling East Fife level. Pic: Kenny McKay.

East Fife’s players have been praised by their manager for the way they’ve learned to pick up crucial League One points in recent weeks.

The Fifers built on their 1-0 home win over Airdrie with a draw away from home against a Stenhousemuir team smarting from their 8-0 defeat to Rangers the week previous.

While the Fifers were playing well and not picking up wins, boss Willie Aitchison says his side are now managing to play well and show more of a ruthless streak in front of goal.

He said: “We’ve turned the games round now from playing really well and losing to playing well and taking something out of the game.

“And that’s important because we can get a bit of momentum going.

“The boys are angry that they didn’t get the result against Stenhousemuir and there was one or two harsh words said about their finishing in the last 20 minutes.

“We needed to be a bit more composed on the ball.”

The Fifers may well have been able to take all three points had some crucial penalty decisions gone their way.

The manager, though, said that was the nature of the game.

“He said: “You don’t want to be hard on people.

“Sometimes these things will go for you and sometimes they won’t.”

The manager added that he hopes to bring former Rangers midfielder Stephen Hughes to the club.

“That’s our intention anyway,” he said.

“We’ve invited him to play in a reserve game ( played as the Mail went to press on Monday) and we’ll build on him from there as we’ve done with the other boys who have come in.”

Robbie Neilson is expected to recover from a strain in time for Saturday’s visit by Ayr but Ross Brown’s knee injury picked up on Saturday is considered a little heavier and may keep him out.