Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Defender Owen Cairns made swift but certain decision to join ‘positive’ Elgin City

Defender Owen Cairns, left, in action for Fraserburgh against Inverurie Locos' Ryan Stott in 2020.
Defender Owen Cairns, left, in action for Fraserburgh against Inverurie Locos' Ryan Stott in 2020.

Defender Owen Cairns feels the time is right to step into League 2 football – and it didn’t take him long to sign on the dotted line with Elgin City.

The right-back was due to make his official debut on Sunday in City’s Borough Briggs centenary tournament final against Peterhead, but a calf strain ruled him out at the last minute.

His signing was confirmed just an hour before kick-off, but he did feature as a trialist in Saturday’s 2-0 win over his former club, Highland League winners Fraserburgh.

The 23-year-old former Ross County youth player spent the second half of last term at League 1 Peterhead, having moved to Fraserburgh from Turriff United in 2019 after gaining experience at Strathspey Thistle.

Elgin went on to win their pre-season tournament, which marked 100 years of the Moray club being based at Borough Briggs.

Saturday’s win over Fraserburgh was backed up with a 2-0 victory over the Blue Toon the following afternoon.

The Black and Whites have been impressive in pre-season, but having deeper defensive cover is a main goal of manager Gavin Price, who is thrilled to land the services of Cairns until 2024.

Elgin finished ninth in League 2 last term, having been more used to being in the promotion mix via the play-offs in recent years.

Ambition matched by the manager

Cairns cannot wait to get the season started, with boss Price determined to have a team back at the top end of the division.

He said: “I have played in the Highland League for seven or eight years, since I was a Strathspey Thistle at 16, and I always had aspirations to play in the SPFL.

“I got that opportunity on loan with Peterhead at the back end of last season, which was a brilliant experience.

“When I spoke to the manager and he put the offer on the table, it didn’t need to be anything more than a short discussion.

“His ambitions lined up with mine as a player. We are both extremely motivated as individuals, but we are motivated for the team.


“We want to take Elgin to the best possible position this season and I was delighted to agree a two-year deal, which works out quite nicely with regards to that.

“Jim Weir (assistant manager) has come in and you can tell he has a real understanding of the game, while Gavin is clearly an excellent manager, so I’m looking forward to working with them.

“Everyone seems really positive as we aim to be a successful team this season.”

Elgin City are talking a good game

Elgin have not leaked a goal in pre-season, with a 5-0 win at Clach, a 6-0 rout of Lossiemouth and a 5-0 success at Keith adding to their clean sheets at the weekend.

Cairns believes communication is key and, having played as a trialist in recent weeks, he’s already seeing it come to fruition.

He said: “The boys already seem to have a good understanding of one another. It’s just a case of the back four gelling. When it comes to defending, consistency and understanding are key.

“It’s really beneficial to me. I was at left-back on Saturday and I had Darryl McHardy in my ear the whole time. I was also in the ear of Matheus Machado, who was left midfield, so it works well throughout the whole team.

Elgin City manager Gavin Price.

“Although it’s not competitive football, we hadn’t conceded a goal before Keith over four matches against some really good sides. That’s testament to how well the boys have been gelling at the back and that’s nice to see.”

Defender Cairns has bags of energy

Cairns also believes his own game is an ideal match for the way Elgin are setting out to play this season.

He added: “I am right-footed, so predominantly I play right-back. I do transition over to the left though and I step into midfield when required.

“I’d say I’m energetic and I like to get on the ball. The team play really good football and that suits my style of play as well.”

And Cairns knows that every single point must be earned in the new League 2 season, with every side having plenty to play for, including avoiding the 10th-place relegation play-off position.

He said: “League 2 is extremely competitive and you seen that last season. Teams at the bottom half were often able to take on teams at the top end.

“Elgin’s squad is definitely going to be strong and we will a strong side home and away and that’s down to the standards set by the manager and Jim Weir.”

Elgin’s pre-season schedule continues on Friday when they go to Forres Mechanics for the testimonial of Can-Cans twins Lee and Graham Fraser.

Already a subscriber? Sign in





Please enter the name you would like to appear on your comments. (It doesn’t have to be your real name - but nothing rude please, we are a polite bunch!) Use a combination of eight or more characters that includes an upper and lower case character, and a number.

By registering with [[site_name]] you agree to our Terms and Conditions and our Privacy Policy

Or sign up with

Facebook Google



Or login with

Forgotten your password? Reset it