Raith set to bolster striking options with double signing

Lewis Vaughan celebrates after his penalty hits the back of the net to seal a 2-1 win over Montrose on Tuesday. Pic: Fife Photo Agency
Lewis Vaughan celebrates after his penalty hits the back of the net to seal a 2-1 win over Montrose on Tuesday. Pic: Fife Photo Agency

Raith Rovers boss Gary Locke is set to bolster his striking options with the unveiling of two new signings at Stark’s Park this afternoon.

Locke has secured the signing of former Hearts forward Rudi Skacel (37), who has been training with the club at the Michael Woods complex in Glenrothes this week.

The Rovers manager also looks to have won the race for Fleetwood Town striker Declan McManus, who was wanted on loan by several clubs in the Championship, including previous side Morton.

“We’re very hopeful of maybe getting two in before Saturday if we can,” Locke said after Tuesday’s win over Montrose.

“Rudi’s a forward thinking player but we need a striker so we’re working on that just now and we’re hopeful we’ll maybe have both of them in place for the weekend.”

Rovers failure to capitalise on their chances against Montrose in midweek almost cost them victory and placed greater emphasis on the search for a goalscorer.

“Some of the chances we missed weren’t small chances - they were gilt-edged and you have to put them away,” Locke said. “We just have to work hard on the training pitch and show that wee bit of composure on a match day.

“It’s still pre-season and boys have still to find their shooting boots, but it’s blatantly obvious that we do need to strengthen up front.”

Locke has got off to a winning start with six points from six in the opening two Betfred Cup ties putting the Kirkcaldy side top of their group.

However, after wins over Highland League and League Two opposition, a sterner test awaits the Kirkcaldy men at Victoria Park on Saturday.

“We’ve been favourites in the last two games but now the pressure is on Ross County as the Premier League team and we’re the team below them,” he said.

“It will be a difficult game. Myself and Darren (Jackson) watched them on Saturday when they beat Montrose 1-0 and played some good stuff.

“It’s a step up, but we showed up reasonably well against Partick in pre-season and we’ll have to be on our toes and take our chances, because we won’t get away with missing as many as we did on Tuesday night.”

Craig Barr and Scott Robertson are still struggling with injury and will miss the trip to the Highlands.

Raith chief executive Eric Drysdale was yesterday (Wednesday) re-elected to the SPFL Board as the joint Championship representative for season 2016-17, along with Leeann Dempster from Hibs.