JOHN McGlynn will aim to break a remarkable losing sequence by winning his first ever Challenge Cup tie as Raith Rovers manager this Saturday.
Rovers have not progressed beyond the first round of the lower league tournament, now re-branded the Ramsdens Cup, since a 3-1 victory over Elgin City back in 2005.
The Raith boss got his hands on the elusive trophy during a promotional photo-shoot at Ramsdens’ High Street store in Kirkcaldy on Monday, where Raith legend Brian Cooper, who played 350 times for the club in the 1970s, happens to be general manager.
And McGlynn will be hoping that this connection can bring his team the luck that has deserted them in recent years.
“We always aim to do well in it – although you wouldn’t think so from our record,” he said.
“A run in the Challenge Cup is very important to us. There’s money to be made from it, and that’s something the football club could do with.
“It’s not always necessarily a team at the top of the league that wins it. Ross County managed it last year and were never out the bottom three. Airdrie won it and got relegated.
“We have a better chance of winning this cup than any other, but we appreciate we have an awkward, difficult game against Cowdenbeath to overcome.”
The Blue Brazil were responsible for Rovers’ early exit last year following a shock 1-0 win at Stark’s Park.
“We’ll have to learn from that one, however we played Cowdenbeath four times in the league after that and didn’t lose to them,” McGlynn said.
“We know a lot about them, they don’t seem to have changed an awful lot, although in pre-season games they seem to be battering the goals in.
“That in itself will tell us that we need to be at our best. The warning signs are there.”
Rovers got a taste of derby action against East Fife in last weekend’s Gilvenbank Hotel Football Festival.
“It was a good rehearsal,” McGlynn said. “We’ve had the experience of a derby game which I hope will be key for us winning the game on Saturday.
“Not only that, we also played great football in that game.
“We’re playing some of the best football we’ve ever played, so I’m very hopeful the goals will come, and when they do the potential in the team is exciting.”