Greig McDonald: East Fife are still right in the hunt for a League Two play-off spot

East Fife boss Greig McDonald says his side are still in the play-off hunt despite losing 1-0 to fellow promotion chasers Annan Athletic at the MGM Timber Bayview Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
East Fife boss Greig McDonald (Photo: Alan Murray)East Fife boss Greig McDonald (Photo: Alan Murray)
East Fife boss Greig McDonald (Photo: Alan Murray)

A last-gasp header from Aidan Smith sealed the three points for the visitors, sending them to third spot in the League Two table, with the Fifers dropping out of the play-off positions down into fifth place.

"With five games left we are still right in the hunt,” McDonald told EFTV. “We need to keep plugging away at it and see how many points we can pick up. Sometimes in football you need to just take a result like that on the chin.

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“If you told us with five games to go we would be in with a shot on the play-offs back in October/November, then we would have bitten your hand off for that chance. We need to bounce back and show what we are made of going into this weekend.

"Up until today we were probably the form team in the division, and that shows that we can do it. We aren’t the finished article yet but we are showing signs of real progress and we were very good at the back again today.”

On the day, both teams cancelled each other out, with chances at a premium. The Fifers’ best effort came ten minutes from time when Scott Shepherd’s free kick crashed off the bar.

“I don’t think there was much in the game,” McDonald said. “Annan were the better side in the first half and we didn’t quite have it right – we gave them too much of the ball and we were too deep, but I didn’t feel like we were under much pressure. Allan Fleming didn’t have much to do.

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“The second half showing was more like ourselves and we shaded it. We showed more attacking intent and we hit the bar, but over the 90 minutes there weren’t really many chances in the match for both sides. We played too many long balls and there was nothing in it.

“It is a sucker-punch at the end. We lose a couple of headers in the box and they get a goal from it. I thought a draw was a fair result and it is a really sore one. We’ve done it to other teams this season but today it happened to us.”

East Fife now travel to league leaders Stirling Albion on Saturday afternoon, with the Forthbank outfit looking to all but seal the title after a stunning campaign which has seem them only lose on four occasions.

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