Raith Rovers: Manager Ian Murray delighted to have taken seven points out of last three league games

For any Raith Rovers followers upset that their team failed to close the gap on Scottish Championship title rivals Dundee United who also dropped two points last weekend, Stark’s Park boss Ian Murray has insisted he’s a ‘glass half full’ type of guy.
Ian Murray has led Raith Rovers to second place in the current Scottish Championship table (Pic by Fife Photo Agency)Ian Murray has led Raith Rovers to second place in the current Scottish Championship table (Pic by Fife Photo Agency)
Ian Murray has led Raith Rovers to second place in the current Scottish Championship table (Pic by Fife Photo Agency)

While Murray’s men were being held 1-1 at home by his former club Airdrieonians – Callum Smith’s 44th-minute opener for Raith was equalised by Nikolay Todorov – the Tannadice team also drew 1-1 on their own patch against Inverness Caledonian Thistle to stay four points ahead of Raith having played a game more.

"I’m half full always,” Murray told RaithTV. “I walked in this stadium today with one point and I’ve left with one point, that's the fact. Yes, we went ahead in the game and you try to go on and win it.

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"United have dropped points at home to Inverness. They’ll be sitting up in Dundee saying: ‘We’ve missed an opportunity to extend the lead’.

"But it’s hard, this is a really tough, unforgiving league as I keep saying.

"If you think you’re going to win every game then you’re wrong.

"We’ve had a really, really decent week, seven out of nine points and if we want to be really honest about it, we could easily be sitting here with three points out the three games because that’s how tight the margins are in this division.

"We have played 18 competitive games now, we’ve lost two.

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"I think if people sit back they will realise how far we’ve come.

“When you have success it builds expectation and we have to go and handle that expectation.

"If we don’t remain humble and don't remain realistic then it will come back and bite us.

"We know we’ve got a long, long way to go still, we’ve got a big job still to do. We’re delighted where we are in the league at the moment, but we keep continuing.

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"We know if we take our eye off the ball teams will catch us.”

Murray praised the performance of his goalkeeper Kevin Dabrowski in Saturday’s draw against Airdrie, while also praising opposition custodian Josh Rae.

“Kevin had two saves in quick succession from that corner kick,” Murray said. “His second one was absolutely outstanding, I think we all thought it was in the back of the net.

"For Kevin to get fingers on the ball and get it onto the post was remarkable. It shows his athleticism, it shows his concentration levels were really, really good.

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"Josh Rae does the same in the second half because I thought Aidan Connolly’s shot was in the top corner and we were going to get that second goal.

"So both goalies deserve a lot of credit. It was hard conditions for them, the ball was bouncing around and skidding off the surface so both keepers go away very happy with their performance."

Ahead of Raith’s next league game against Queen's Park at Hampden this Saturday (kick-off 3pm), Murray said that – among his injured contingent – Jamie Gullan and Jack Hamilton were the closest to nearing fitness.

"They’ve done a lot of good hard rehab,” he said. “So I’m hoping, if there’s no setbacks – although we’ll have to wait and see – that they’ll be in contention for this Saturday or they’ll certainly be in the squad.

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"We have to be careful with them and it does have an effect on our week because if we’re being completely honest we probably needed to freshen up our attacking options against Airdrie if we had those guys available.

"We didn’t so we asked the same boys to go again for us and they did fantastically well and gave 100%, which we expect but we also appreciate as well.”

On injured pair Ross Matthews and Keith Watson, Murray added: “It’s been a long standing situation for Ross but he’s doing really hard rehab. Keith will be out for a couple of weeks.”