Grant Murray has told his Raith Rovers squad they must get back to winning ways in Saturday’s Fife derby at Cowdenbeath.
Rovers have only managed one victory in their last seven league fixtures and have slipped out of the Championship’s promotion play-off places as a result.
Despite this, Murray’s men are only nine points from the top, but defeat at Central Park on Saturday would drag the Kirkcaldy side to within six points of the relegation play-off zone.
“We have to get back to winning ways - I know it, and the players know it,” Murry said.
“For us to get back to where we’ve been all season that’s what we need to do.
“You can see how tight the league is, and the play-offs are giving everyone something to aim for. But we can only concentrate on ourselves, and we want to make amends for our defeat in our last game.”
Cowdenbeath have the Championship’s top scorer, Kane Hemmings, in the ranks, with 18 goals to his name. They also have the league’s leakiest defence and Rovers will hope to exploit that as they look to end a run of four games without scoring.
“First and foremost it’s a derby and that’s the most important thing,” Murray said. “These are big games for both clubs and sets of fans.
“They have players who are in form and it’s up to us to stop them. We did well there earlier in the season to come away with a 4-3 win. I’d happily settle for any kind of win on Saturday.”
Rovers were given a timely boost ahead of the game when they beat a host of Championship clubs to sign striker John Baird for a second time on Thursday.
Murray moved quickly to sign the free agent on a short-term deal until the end of the season following his release from Premiership side Partick Thistle earlier in the week.
Baird, a former team mate of the current boss, spent two successful seasons with the Kirkcaldy club, scoring 26 goals before moving up to the SPL with Dundee in the summer of 2012.
The 28-year-old scored five times in 32 appearances for the Dark Blues last season, but has struggled to make any impact at Firhill this term having failed to find the net in 17 appearances - mostly from the bench.
Meanwhile, Rovers will have midfielder Kevin Moon available for the trip to Cowdenbeath after the Scottish Football Association admitted it had banned him by mistake. Rovers were told by the SFA last week that Moon had accrued six bookings and would be banned for the Alloa match, which was postponed.
However, Moon has only picked up five bookings and the SFA has admitted its mistake.
“There was a mix-up at the SFA, which we are disappointed in,” Murray said.
“He wouldn’t have been available for Alloa due to injury anyway, but he has trained this week and is available for selection.”