Saints look to avoid capital punishment

Saints fire in a free-kick during the weekend defeat at Dalkeith.
Saints fire in a free-kick during the weekend defeat at Dalkeith.

Saint Andrews United will be looking to get their title charge back on track when Edinburgh United visit this weekend.

Saints have been beaten twice on the trot now, in the cup and league, - ironically losing both games against teams from the capital.

On Saturday Phil McGuire’s side went down 2-1 at Dalkeith, with the hosts netting their winner late on.

Saints boss McGuire told The Citizen: “Our own season had been going very well and although the disappointing loss away to Dalkeith was a hard one to take, we still have so many positives over the course of the season so far.

“I was pleased with our performance on Saturday, in the first half I felt both teams cancelled each other out and the midfield area was bogged down, making it difficult to get any fluency in our play.

“I thought we got the rough end of the referee’s decisions, we were denied a penalty and were harshly penalised for a free kick on the edge of our box which led to their first goal.

“Ironically it should have been our free kick then came a magnificent save from the Dalkeith ‘keeper - we would have come in level.

“At the start of the second half I made a tactical change and knew the game would stretch but, as a result, it would free up the space in the middle of the park.

“I felt it worked well, as it’s been the best we have played this season in terms of ball retention and players dictating the game, although we lacked the final ball in the last third.

“The boys worked extremely hard throughout and as much as a draw is a point, I feel it is no good in this league when you want to challenge and we were caught with a sucker punch in the last minute.

“If we had come in with a draw, we would have felt it was two points dropped but, as I stated to the players, work rate is mandatory in our team, it’s how we play, the bravery to get on the ball and the will to make things happen.

“If we play like that we will certainly win more than we lose and sometimes in football you don’t get your just rewards for your play.”

Saints will include latest signing Mario Jurisic after he received international clearance last week.

Kick off is 2.30p.m. and the game will be followed by a Video Race Meeting in the bar.