Elgin City manager Gavin Price insists his players can handle the pressure as they bid to take control of their play-off push against Stranraer tonight.
City welcome the Blues to Borough Briggs knowing victory will open up a six-point gap between the Black and Whites, who moved up to third thanks to a 3-0 win at Annan on Saturday and their fifth-placed opponents, who beat Brora in extra-time in the Scottish Cup at the weekend.
The importance of this one has not been lost on City.
Price said: “Every game is worth three points, but it goes without saying the matches against sides around you carry extra significance and we know this is a game which can affect the standings in the table significantly.
“These games against the other teams in the top five are all going to be played on a knife-edge, especially when you see a gap has opened up between the top and bottom half of the league.
“We played Stranraer in our first league game of the season and had a good result down there, but their form has picked up since then and we know they have some dangerous strikers in their side.
“We know, not just against Stranraer, but in all these top half games we’re going to have to play well and get the basics right of defending our penalty area when under pressure and taking our chances at the other end.”
The City boss is pleased to see the gradual improvement being made by his side with each passing games, but insists there is still more to come from the Black and Whites squad in the weeks ahead.
He said: “Since our last home game, we’ve taken six points out of six and away from home and you can’t argue with that return. We’re steadily improving with each passing game and we feel we’re heading in the right direction after a tough couple of games when we first returned.
“In a normal pre-season, you need five or six games to get up to speed and hopefully we’re getting close to where we were before the season was put on hold.”
Clubs in League One and League Two are going through hectic schedules as they play catch-up following the break in action due to Covid-19 and the City players have taken to other means of recovery to avoid muscle injuries.
Price said: “We’re nursing a few niggles after the weekend, which is to be expected with the heavy schedule we have, but we’ll have a yoga session with the players and hopefully they’ll all be fine for the game.
“We’re trying it just now over Zoom and it seems to help the players recover between games.”