Kirkcaldy & Dysart: Manager Craig Ness preparing for 'step into the unknown' at Vale of Leithen this Saturday

Kirkcaldy & Dysart manager Craig Ness (Pic by Alan Murray)Kirkcaldy & Dysart manager Craig Ness (Pic by Alan Murray)
Kirkcaldy & Dysart manager Craig Ness (Pic by Alan Murray)
Kirkcaldy & Dysart gaffer Craig Ness admits that this Saturday’s opening East of Scotland League first division away opponents Vale of Leithen represent an unusual test for his side.

“It’s kind of a step into the unknown to be honest,” Ness told the Fife Free Press. “They have had back-to-back relegations, not the greatest win record. But a new manager (Ian Flynn) has come in during the summer and he’s added quite a few players, players who we’ve come up against the last few years in the conferences including quite a few from Edinburgh United.

"So I think they’ll be much improved at this level. I don’t think it’s one we can take lightly, look into their recent past and say: ‘This team took so many drubbings last year in the premier league, it’s going to be easy’.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"Because I don’t think this year there are going to be any walkovers and any easy games.

"So we’ve definitely got to be at our best going down there. We’ll prepare for it like any other game, at full throttle, and we’ll see where it takes us.”

The YM, who have signed four players this summer, are set to add a trialist centre half with Ness also hoping to bring in another forward.

Conversely, there have been four recent departures from Alex Penman Park.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Once the Vale of Leithen game (kick-off 2.30pm) is out the way, the YM have a home Fife derby against newly promoted St Andrews United next Wednesday, August 2, with kick-off at 7.30pm.

Ness said: “I’m looking forward to our first home game. I quite fancy St Andrews this year to do very well.

"They had a good end to the season last year and obviously got promoted from division two.

"They’ve recruited well in the summer.

"Their manager (Robbie Raeside) has played at a higher level and he instils a standard throughout the side.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"I watched them a couple of times last year and they were very impressive with the way they approached the games.

"That will be a tough game as well.

" It’s the first of three home games on the bounce.

"You’ve got to try and pick up maximum points at home so hopefully we can do that and we will be off to a good start.”

Kirkcaldy & Dysart go into Saturday’s fixture having lost 3-2 at home to Stirling University in a pre-season friendly last weekend. YM goalscorers were John Smith and Stevie Jeffries.

When asked what his target is this season, Ness said: “The league has improved dramatically.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"The teams that are remaining in it from last year have got stronger, the teams coming down from the premier league ate strong, the teams coming up from the second division are strong.

"So first and foremost I think we have to make sure that we’re not getting dragged into that relegation area at the turn of the year.

"Then, if we can achieve that, we can sit down as a group, reassess where we are and then set different targets.

"But staying in this league is of the utmost importance.”

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.