Elgin City defender Andy McDonald insists they won’t be fazed by Ross County’s Premiership status – despite slumping to back-to-back league defeats.
McDonald is relishing the prospect of facing the Staggies at Borough Briggs in tomorrow night’s League Cup group game.
Elgin would have loved to be heading into the tie on the back of a morale-boosting return to winning ways following the previous week’s defeat by Edinburgh City.
But Darren Lyon’s first- half strike kept Queen’s Park at the League 2 summit after a close-fought 90 minutes.
Looking ahead to the cup, 22-year-old Glaswegian McDonald said: “We’re doing well in the Betfred Cup group, so I don’t think we’ve got much to lose on Tuesday.
“We need to take it in our stride, play our own football and not get too worried about them being a Premiership team.”
Elgin striker Kane Hester was sent off in the final moments after two yellow- card offences in rapid succession.
McDonald said: “We knew it was going to be a hard game with them being full-time and top of the league, but, apart from a spell of 15 to 20 minutes in the first half, we more than matched them and we are disappointed that we gave a goal away during that spell.
“We’ve got to look at ourselves and make sure that we don’t concede when the other team has a spell of pressure against us.
“We are looking good at the back, but that’s two 1-0 defeats in two games.
The Spiders had the better openings in a tense first half with Bob McHugh fluffing the first clear chance when Michael McGlinchey set him up eight yards out.
On 32 minutes, Ross MacLean charged down an attempted clearance from Elgin skipper Euan Spark to go clear into the box only to lift the ball over from 15 yards.
Three minutes later, the Spiders edged in front when MacLean’s cut back from the right picked out Darren Lyon, whose deflected strike flew high past Tom McHale into the net.
Elgin’s first chance was an Aidan Sopel drive on the stroke of half-time which Willie Muir saved at his near post.
The second half saw Elgin gradually introduce more attacking players to the fray and put pressure on the visitors.
Home striker Hester twice went down in the Queens box looking for a penalty, but referee Barry Cook rejected both appeals.
Elgin kept pushing, but the Spiders held on to preserve their record of not conceding a league goal so far this season.
Home misery was completed when Hester picked up a second booking and his second red card of the season right at the death.
Elgin manager Gavin Price said: “We didn’t really do enough. We huffed and puffed a bit and, although I was happier with our second-half performance, we didn’t really create anything major.
“We cost ourselves in the first half really, but their goal changed the complexion of the game.
“I’d like to be going into the Ross County game on the back of a good performance and result but it’s one that will take care of itself.”
ELGIN CITY (4-5-1) – McHale 6; Cooper 6, Bronsky 6, McDonald 7, Spark 6; O’Keefe 5 (Peters 67), MacEwan 5 (Osadolor 52), Cameron 6, Dingwall 7, Sopel 6 (MacBeath 80); Hester 6. Subs not used – Mailer, McHardy, Wilson, Hay, Loveland, Kelly.
QUEEN’S PARK (4-4-2) – Muir 6; Doyle 7, Kilday 7, Grant 7, Robson 8; MacLean 7, Slater 7, Lyon 6 (Carroll 80, 3), Galt 6 (Quitongo 80, 3); McGlinchey 6 (Longridge 67, 4, Gillespie 88, 2), McHugh 6 (Baynham 88).
Referee – Barry Cook 6.
Man of the match – Tommy Robson.