Fife Flyers: play-off ambitions at stake in huge Glasgow Clan double header

In the race for play-off places, weekends don’t come much bigger than this as Fife Flyers and Glasgow Clan go head to head over two nights.
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Tom Coolen’s team have to target a clean sweep of the points in regulation time to leapfrog their west coast rivals in the standings and move into one of the eight qualifying spots up for grabs.

The teams meet at Braehead Arena on Friday night with the return at Fife Ice Arena on Saturday - and both matches are expected to draw bumper crowds and generate a noisy atmosphere.

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Flyers trail Clan by three points and their rivals have two games in hand, but the race to be part of the post-season competition remains incredibly tight - Dundee Stars and Manchester Storm are tied on 42 points with both also having games in hand over Fife.

Fife Flyers celebrated victory in the last meeting with Glasgow Clan (Pic: Derek Young)Fife Flyers celebrated victory in the last meeting with Glasgow Clan (Pic: Derek Young)
Fife Flyers celebrated victory in the last meeting with Glasgow Clan (Pic: Derek Young)

Coolen admitted: “Everyone knows the importance of these games. We know what we have to do and will give it our very best.”

Flyers took just one point last weekend, and the ground conceded in a 3-2 shoot out defeat to Storm was a setback. It was also the club;’s fifth one-goal game in their last six outings, underlining the intensely competitive nature of this year’s league. The coach admitted one point wasn’t the goal.

“I’m always looking for three or four - that’s our aim. We have to overcome that and keep going. The guys were disappointed not to take more from the home game - almost 50 shots on goal and their netminder took that game.”

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This will be Flyers’ first encounter with Clan since they scoffed a fine 7-4 win on Hogmanay just 24 hours after going down 4-1 in Braehead.

Defenceman Stephen Desrocher will face his former team-mates for the first time since joining Clan, but he won’t be joined former netminder Kevin Lindskoug who was released this week to return home to Sweden for personal reasons.

“We have had good match ups and success against Clan,” said Coolen who pinpointed key areas his team has to be on top of.

“It is down to breakdowns - diminish them, play good defence, don’t turn over pucks and then you increase your opportunities to win games and be successful.”All the items were on the agenda for Thursday’s training as he completed his preparations for Friday’s trip along the M8.

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“We diminish our mistakes - it’s all about good defence, and giving them nothing. It’s like a game of pool - leave them nothing.”

Flyers go into the weekend games with a clean bill of health, and Coolen will decide on his healthy scratches closer to each face-off.

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