No pressure on Fifers against league leaders

Paul McManus, in action here against Peterhead, scored the decisive extra-time penalty for East Fife against Arbroath in the Irn-Bru Cup (Duncan Brown)
Paul McManus, in action here against Peterhead, scored the decisive extra-time penalty for East Fife against Arbroath in the Irn-Bru Cup (Duncan Brown)

East Fife manager Gary Naysmith said there would be no pressure on his side tomorrow (Saturday) when they visited table-topping Alloa.

The Fifers are nevertheless keen to sting the Wasps, having hopefully recovered from Wednesday night’s extra-time exertions at Arbroath, when they eventually won the second-round tie 3-2.

And, ironically, the third-round draw yesterday paired East Fife with Alloa, again at Recreation Park, on September 3 or 4.

Naysmith, however, was looking forward to the more immediate meeting with Alloa at a time when both sides were playing some very good football.

“They were a Championship side last year and we were in the Second Division,” he said.

“When a team recruits as many players as they have, you’re sometimes not sure how long it will take them to gel – but they are on a fantastic run of form and they have gelled really well.

“It’s a fantastic advert for our league and it’s a game we are looking forward to.

“Few people will be expecting us to get a result,” added Naysmith. “That said, we will not be going there in fear – we will be going there to have a go.

“We have started well ourselves.

“We recognise they are a good, strong team but we’ll be going into it on the back of another win on Wednesday. Two away wins would set us up very well.”

A 5-2 victory at Stranraer on Saturday propelled Jack Ross’ Alloa to pole position in the table, while East Fife were winning 3-0 at Peterhead.

Naysmith said the Fifers’ defensive shape that day, the clean sheet, an improved awareness of distances between midfield and defence, and cover play, as well as the goals, impressed him most about the display, while he also felt Peterhead were maybe a bit sapped after their exertions against Rangers.

Club captain Kevin Smith, one of the weekend’s scorers, and who was also on target against Arbroath, said East Fife were taking a focused approach but were capable of matching anyone in the league. They had a good blend in the side and were looking forward to Saturday’s games.