Raith Rovers boss proud despite Premiership semi-final loss

John McGlynn says he was proud of his players despite losing out in the Premiership play-off semi-final against Dundee.

Monday, 17th May 2021, 11:54 am
John McGlynn shouts instructions at Dens Park (Pic: Michael Gillen)

The Stark’s Park boss said his team would “go for it” in the second leg at Dens last Saturday and was a good as his word with an attacking 4-4-2 line-up.

But despite winning the match the 3-0 deficit from the first leg was too much to overcome and a single goal from Lewis Vaughan was all they could manage on the night.

The Stark’s Park boss said his team would “go for it” in the second leg at Dens last Saturday and was a good as his word with an attacking 4-4-2 line-up.

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But despite winning the match the 3-0 deficit from the first leg was too much to overcome and a single goal from Lewis Vaughan was all they could manage on the night.

“We made a great start to the game and we put Dundee under enormous pressure,” McGlynn said.

“We had balls in the box, corners, free kicks, everything was going in, turning them in behind, long, diagonal balls - that's everything that we're not but we had to change it because we were 3-0 down and we only had one game.

“We played them here in the second last game of the season and again at Stark's Park last week where we [both times] passed the ball for fun but they came out on top, so we had to change it.

“We had to be very direct so we did that and made them panic.

“We got the goal back - we had to score first - delighted that we got it and there was a lot of time left for us to get a second.”

McGlynn admitted that he still felt a slight sense of injustice regarding the goal from Rehan Tumilty in the first leg at home which was incorrectly ruled out for offside.

"I look back at the goal we didn't get at Stark's Park. As everyone knows that was a goal and if we'd got that goal then it's 3-2 with us having a lot of time to go and Dundee probably panicking even more so than they did.

“Unfortunately we fell just a bit short in getting that second goal that would have given us a massive boost because the first goal gave us a boost.

“It's very fine margins. We had a penalty claim for a handball. They had a penalty here against us in the second last game when the ball hit Kyle Benedictus who had no chance [to get out of the way].

“We have the same thing here in this game but no penalty. You just don't know what is a penalty and what isn't nowadays with regard to a handball.”

With their season now over McGlynn says he is “very proud of the players tonight and for the whole season”.

He added: “We've just come up from League One, they've delivered some tremendous performances, played some great football, scored some great goals, been very entertaining to watch, had a lot of plaudits from a lot of football people and that pleases me.

"We just have to continue to get better.

“We've won away from home here, we've won at Tynecastle this season so we can do it.

“Some players will now go but we've already started recruiting for next season with guys on pre-contracts.

“We now have to sit down with players and see who is going to sign. There's been contracts on tables for some time that haven't been signed, so we have to find out if they're staying or going and then get some players in.

“We've done really well, we've raised the bar, we've raised the expectation levels and we'll need to manage that.

“There could be six teams vying to win the league next year because there's not a Hearts, Rangers or Hibs in the Championship as there has been in years gone by.

“Partick have come up, Hamilton are coming down, do Dundee stay in it or does somebody else come down?

“Now that there's not a Hearts in the league does everybody have a chance next year? Do we have a chance?

“So, we need to get better and see what happens.”