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Ally MacDonald hopes Brora’s experience can help in crucial Brechin clash

Brora Rangers' Ally MacDonald is determined to continue their bid to win the Highland League with victory over Brechin City
Brora Rangers' Ally MacDonald is determined to continue their bid to win the Highland League with victory over Brechin City

Ally MacDonald hopes that Brora Rangers’ experience of winning titles can come to the fore against Brechin City.

It’s third against fourth at Dudgeon Park as the Cattachs and the Hedgemen try to keep up the pressure at the top of the Breedon Highland League.

Both sides are six points behind leaders Fraserburgh and Brora defender MacDonald reckons neither team can afford to drop more points.

The Sutherland side have won the title in the last two Covid-19 disrupted seasons and also have a core of players – of which MacDonald is one – that won the league in 2014 and 2015.

He said: “This game is set up quite well and should be quite exciting because both teams really need to go and win it.

“If we lose and Fraserburgh win we’d be nine points behind and it would be difficult to close the gap so I think both sides need to take three points from this game.

“I think experience can be important and we’ve seen it in games like this in the past where experience comes to the fore and we’ve managed to get results we’ve needed at important times of the season.

“Against Brechin we’re looking for something similar. It’s a big game and important we try to win.

“But we don’t need to build it up too much and let the occasion get to us and not play how we want to play.

“Yes it’s a big game but we need to do what we’ve done right before to get the three points and not get caught up in the occasion.

“I think that’s where experience comes in because we’ve been in this position before playing big games we’ve needed to win and the boys have dealt with it well.”

No margin for error

Meanwhile, Brechin boss Andy Kirk is determined not to lose more ground to sides above them in the table having been defeated by Fraserburgh and Formartine United in recent weeks.

He added: “We go into every game trying to win and every team is the same.

“It will be a difficult game because Brora are a very strong side with good players, but it’s an opportunity for us.

Brechin manager Andy Kirk, right, is looking forward to their clash with Brora Rangers

“You don’t want to lose any ground at any stage. When we played Fraserburgh and Formartine we knew that if we wanted to have a chance of winning the league we needed to win all our games between now and the end of the season.

“Nothing has really changed, if we want to have a chance of being up there we need to win every game.

“We keep plugging away and see where it takes us.”

News from around the Highland League

Elsewhere, in the Highland League leaders Fraserburgh – minus Jamie Beagrie – tackle Huntly at Christie Park.

The hosts have Angus Grant, Bradley Manson, Stuart Taylor, Alex Thoirs and Colin Charlesworth sidelined and doubts over Michael Clark and Logan Johnstone.

Second-placed Buckie Thistle meet bottom side Fort William at Victoria Park. Yves Zama is suspended for Fort. Buckie’s Declan Milne has been loaned to Dyce, while Kyle MacLeod and Adam MacLeod are still out.

Jamie Calder is a doubt for Clachnacuddin, who host Keith at Grant Street Park. The Maroons have Craig Reid, Connor Grant, Liam Duncan, Tom Andrews and Przemyslaw Nawrocki missing.

Wick Academy are without Alan Farquhar, Brandon Sinclair, Ryan Campbell, Jack Henry, Sean Campbell and Joe Anderson for Rothes’ trip to Harmsworth Park, but Andrew Hardwick returns to the squad.

The Speysiders – who have lost defender Ali Stark to Banks o’ Dee – could welcome back Jack Brown and Allen Mackenzie.

Strathspey Thistle welcome Deveronvale to Seafield Park. Kane Davies and Ewan Neil are out for the Jags but Jordan Wardrope, Robbie Donaldson and Andrew MacLean return.

Lossiemouth take on Turriff United at Grant Park. Michael Weir and Ross Elliott return for Lossie.

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