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Mark Cowie says title-chasing Fraserburgh have a tricky hurdle to overcome in Rothes

Fraserburgh manager Mark Cowie expects a difficult encounter against Rothes
Fraserburgh manager Mark Cowie expects a difficult encounter against Rothes

Fraserburgh manager Mark Cowie says it’s credit to his players that they’re still top of the Breedon Highland League.

And the Broch boss is determined to stay there by getting the better of Rothes at Mackessack Park today.

With three games remaining, Fraserburgh lead Buckie Thistle by a point in the race for the title.

Given that the Jags have won 22 successive league matches, Cowie’s charges have done well to stay top of the pile.

But he knows their quest to remain in pole position will be made difficult by a Rothes side who beat them earlier in the season.

He said: “Every opponent we will face in these last three games will want to take a scalp – to say they’ve been the team which has contributed to who wins the league.

“We know Rothes will be up for it and we won’t shy away from it.

“I have great admiration for Ross Jack as a manager. He always sets his team up very well and they are always difficult to get a result against.

“But we’re playing well and we’ll go there with the bit between our teeth and see if we can get a result.

“It won’t be anything other than difficult, as will all three of our (remaining) games.

“If you want to win leagues and trophies, you have to win difficult games, so this is the next difficult one we need to overcome.

Buckie have racked up 22 wins on the bounce, which is unbelievable. But it shows the work that my guys have done that we’re still in front.

“We still have three massive games to go. Buckie have got, on paper, the same kind of games.

“There really is no easy game now. No one would have put money on Strathspey beating us (on Wednesday), but on another night it could well have happened.”

Midfielder Paul Young could return from a knee problem for the Broch.

Title race doesn’t interest Robertson

Meanwhile, Rothes midfielder Fraser Robertson is not interested in who wins the league.

But the 26-year-old is determined to help the Speysiders return to winning ways after defeats against Brora Rangers and Strathspey Thistle.

He added: “You always know it’s going to be tough against Fraserburgh, they’re a very good side and a very physical side.

“Everyone’s going on about how we can do people a favour and what not, but we just want to concentrate on winning the game for ourselves, never mind helping anyone else out.

Fraser Robertson, right, is only focused on winning games with Rothes and not how they could impact the title race between Fraserburgh and Buckie

“Nobody at Rothes has a favourite out of Fraserburgh or Buckie, or cares who wins it.

“We just want to try to win every game we can for ourselves. It doesn’t make any difference to us whoever wins the league.

“We’re still pushing to finish as high up the table as we can. Fourth will be a tough ask now, but we’re going to keep going and try to get there.”

News from around the Highland League

Elsewhere, Turriff United are without Rhys Clark, David Dey, Ethan Smith and Kyle Gordon for Brora’s visit to the Haughs because of injury. Banks o’ Dee loanee Magnus Watson has also been recalled by his parent club.

For the Cattachs, Max Ewan is a doubt.

Third-placed Brechin City take on Clachnacuddin at Glebe Park. The Lilywhites are without Martin Callum, Blair Lawrie and Scott Morrison.

Forres Mechanics and Huntly meet at Mosset Park with both sides set to be along similar lines to their games on Wednesday night.

Lossiemouth make the trip to Station Park to play Nairn County, with Ryan Farquhar and Ally Bellingham absent.

Keith and Fort William meet at Kynoch Park for the second time in four days. The Lochaber side could be confirmed as the division’s bottom club if they lose and Strathspey and Turrriff win.

Deveronvale will look to bounce back from their midweek loss to Huntly against Formartine United at Princess Royal Park. The visitors are looking for a fourth straight win.

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