Boss Gavin Price insists Elgin City have done all they can to keep active during almost three weeks out of competitive action.
Tuesday’s rearranged home league clash with leaders Kelty Hearts was postponed late on due to a waterlogged pitch.
Chairman Graham Tatters explained relentless downpours over Moray from late afternoon put paid to the fixture.
Winger Conor O’Keefe has discussed his wasted journey after driving from Paisley to discover the match was washed out.
Now City face their first fixture since holding Edinburgh City to a 1-1 league draw on November 23.
Since then, tomorrow’s hosts Annan Athletic have moved into third position with a 1-0 win at Edinburgh.
And just below ninth-placed Elgin, Cowdenbeath closed the gap to four points with a 1-0 home victory against Stirling Albion.
Kelty would have been at Borough Briggs last Saturday, but they were too busy knocking out League One Montrose on penalties in their Scottish Cup third round replay to earn a shot at holders St Johnstone next month.
Players return for trek to Annan
Elgin didn’t waste last weekend though and played Highland League team Strathspey Thistle at the Gleaner Arena to give as many players game time as possible.
The squad also trained after the postponement on Tuesday and had their usual Thursday session.
Price said: “It has been a bit of a break since we last played, which is not great because we wanted to build a bit of momentum after our last performance.
“We will get on with it. We have trained well over the last few weeks and we got a session in on Tuesday after the game was called off.
“Everyone was there, so we trained together and again on Thursday, so we are good to go on Saturday.
“We did manage to get a game against Strathspey last Saturday, which is better than doing nothing.
“Also, on the positive side, not playing has allowed a few players to recover from injuries, so they should be fresh and raring to go.”
Rain hammered chances of a game
Price was driving north from Perthshire for the Kelty contest, as were a number of his south-based players. He concedes it was a blow to lose out to the weather.
He said: “It was a struggle getting up the road for myself, some of our players and obviously for Kelty Hearts.
“It was called off an hour or so before and it was quite frustrating. The water was lying on the pitch at 6pm, so there was no other option.”
First goal so vital at Galabank
With Annan now six points behind second-placed Forfar, they will be going all-out for the victory at Galabank.
Likewise, Elgin need to get a winning run going to add fresh spark to their faltering promotion hopes. They are eight points adrift of fourth-placed Stirling Albion.
Price wants his players to grasp control of the match and hit the net first.
He added: “It is always a tough game against Annan. (Manager) Peter Murphy’s teams are always difficult to play against.
“They are not a side you’d want to lose the first goal to. We need to ensure we’re switched on from the start at both ends of the park.”
Defender Archie Macphee and midfielder Brian Cameron are the main absentees for City tomorrow, who should otherwise be back to full strength.
Elgin and Annan have only met once this season and the visitors left Moray with a 2-0 victory thanks to early and late goals from Owen Moxon and Matthew Douglas.
Academy boss makes move next door
Elgin City, meanwhile, have confirmed Robbie Hope will be stepping down as its academy manager at the end of this month after 17 years with the club.
A statement said: “We would like to thank Robbie for his contribution to the club over this period having initially set up our community football scheme then improving our academy which now proudly has 10 teams from the age of nine all the way up to 18.
“He is not going far as he is moving next door to work for Elgin Sports Community Trust.”
Robbie Hope will be stepping down as Academy Manager at the end of this month after 17 years with the Club.
— Elgin City F.C. (@ElginCityFC) December 8, 2021