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Andy Kirk looking for Brechin City improvement on return to Highland League action against Rothes

Brechin manager Andy Kirk.
Brechin manager Andy Kirk.

Brechin City manager Andy Kirk has demanded a response from his side to their SPFL Trust Trophy Cup exit to Buckie Thistle when Rothes visit Glebe Park on Saturday.

The Highland League newcomers have started the new campaign with three straight wins in the league but they were well beaten by the Jags in the cup tie on Wednesday.

With another title rival in Ross Jack’s Rothes making the trip to Angus today Kirk is demanding a huge improvement from the 3-1 home defeat.

He said: “We’re looking for a reaction to Wednesday. I was disappointed with the second half on Saturday especially at Deveronvale and Wednesday was embarrassing. It won’t be accepted here.

“The players have to take responsibility as they are the ones on the pitch. They are the guys who are on the pitch and have to run the yards, make the runs and make the tackles.

“Buckie did that more than we did so we have to address that.”

New signing Julian Wade is in contention for a starting place after an impressive cameo off the bench on his debut against the Jags.

The Dominica international striker signed for City before Wednesday’s cup tie and Kirk has high hopes for the 31 year-old.

He said: “Julian came to our attention after moving to Aberdeen and it is clear he is a strong, clever player. He needs time to settle but I’ve no doubt he will do well for us once he gets used to how we play.”

Rothes boss Jack is refusing to read too far into Brechin’s midweek defeat, with their strong league start coming as no surprise to the former Elgin City manager.

Ross Jack

Jack said: “They have started very well. It was no surprise they came unstuck against Buckie who are flying at the minute.

“We know this is a massive task. Brechin are going to throw everything at getting out of this league, through recruiting players and everything else they are going to do all they can to get out.

“They have got off to a good start in the league so we know the size of the task when we go down there.”

Rothes are also undefeated so far this term but they relinquished a leading position to draw 2-2 with Nairn County last weekend.

Jack has been encouraged with the way his side has performed, and he added: “The first couple of games were decent, we didn’t play so well against Nairn last week but on another day if we had taken our chances we would have been out of sight.

“We just couldn’t get that elusive third goal that would have put the game to bed.

“We are still creating chances which is great, we just need people to contribute from all over the park by scoring some more goals.

“I have been delighted with the way we’ve been playing overall. We just need to capitalise on some of our chances, although the opposing goalkeeper has been outstanding in the last couple of matches.”

Rothes have doubts over Jack Brown and Ryan McRitchie, while Wayne MacKintosh is out with a knee injury and Paul Macleod has joined Nairn St Ninian on loan.

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