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Elgin City defender Matthew Cooper targeting another cup scalp against Ayr United

Elgin City defender Matthew Cooper, left.
Elgin City defender Matthew Cooper, left.

Elgin City defender Matthew Cooper sees no reason why the Black and Whites cannot claim another cup scalp against Championship Ayr United at Borough Briggs tonight.

Gavin Price’s men have produced some strong results against teams from a higher level in recent seasons, defeating Montrose in the Betfred Cup earlier this season having knocked Dundee and Airdrieonians out of the Challenge Cup last term.

Ayr are seventh in the Championship, but have picked up four points from their last two matches under new manager David Hopkin.

Cooper feels his side is capable of producing another upset in the Scottish Cup, which would set up a third round tie at home to Keith or Clyde.

Cooper said: “One of our strengths has been getting some results against teams from higher divisions.

“We are quite strong on the counter attack if we can soak up all the pressure.

“It’s different at home where we always like to be the team on the ascendancy.

“We know it’s going to be tough, we will have to soak up a lot of pressure and any attacks we do get we have to make the most of.

“I know they have hit a purple patch with a few good results recently.

“Before the break we were certainly going into it with a lot of confidence. We were playing well, and they were struggling a bit for form down at the bottom end of the table.

“We know it will be tough. The big plus side for them is they have not stopped their rhythm, and they have been doing full-time training as well.

“There are no excuses. It’s almost a free hit to go and try and do what we can to get through the tie.

“It’s a home tie as well, with a long way for them to come. We should be aiming to win and get through into the next round.”

City returned from a lay-off of more than two months against Edinburgh City on Saturday, going down 2-1 in the League Two encounter.

Former Caley Thistle player Cooper feels the quick return to action gives his side the chance to instantly make amends.

He added: “It’s good to be back after a long time. It was up in the air whether we would be back, so it’s good to finally get the green light.

“We’ve not had long to prepare and we felt that on Saturday. It’s no excuse because everyone was in the same boat.

“We just came up a bit short on Saturday. We lacked a bit of quality and Edinburgh deserved the win.

“We’ve got no time to think about it, we are straight back in every Saturday and Tuesday.

“This is just another chance to sort it.”

Cooper is optimistic Price has the strength in depth in his squad to cope with the hectic upcoming run of fixtures, with the 26-year-old adding: “Everyone in the squad had all agreed we definitely wanted to go back.

“We knew we would have a lot of fixtures crammed in – if we were going to go for the full 27 games it would have been even more.

“Everyone is prepared for it. The manager has already said he has got a squad, and he’s brought a couple of lads in for that reason.

“I don’t think anyone will be able to play 90 minutes of every game.

“We have got a good squad, and as the manager says we will not be weakening the side by bringing these lads in.

“They are all champing at the bit, we’ve got a lot of good competition for places at the minute.”

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