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Scott Barbour calls for cool heads as Fraserburgh target Highland League title triumph

Fraserburgh's Scott Barbour, second from right, is wary of the threat posed by Forres Mechanics
Fraserburgh's Scott Barbour, second from right, is wary of the threat posed by Forres Mechanics

Scott Barbour says it would mean the world to Fraserburgh to win the Breedon Highland League title – but insists they have to remain focused when they face Forres Mechanics today.

A win or a draw at Bellslea would give the Broch their first league championship since 2002.

Local lad Barbour is well aware of what the success would mean to everyone connected with the club.

A bumper crowd of around 1,000 is expected this afternoon, but the striker is taking nothing for granted.

The 30-year-old said: “Everyone knows how long it’s been and it would be brilliant for the fans and the town.

“The fans come to games year-in, year-out regardless of where we are in the league.

“And then within the club you have people like (chairman) Finlay Noble and all the directors and committee who do so much.

Scott Barbour, left, in action for Fraserburgh in last weekend’s win over Nairn which puts them on the cusp of title glory

“In the squad there are guys like Willie West, Bryan Hay and myself who have a lot of experience and then there are younger lads like Logan Watt, Ryan Sargent and Lewis Duncan.

“But everyone is local and we’re a tight-knit squad and it would mean the world to everyone to do it and there’s no hiding that.

“But we can’t get carried away, we’ve just got to focus on the game.

“It’s always a tough game against Forres and with players like Lee Fraser and Paul Brindle they carry a threat and we’ll have to be wary of that.

“We have to make sure we perform and give ourselves the best chance of getting a positive result.”

A shinguard and a shirt

Barbour used to watch Fraserburgh as a fan when he was growing up, although he wasn’t present the last time they won the league in 2002 with victory against Cove Rangers at Allan Park.

He added: “It was the season after that when I started watching Fraserburgh regularly.

“But a couple of my pals were at the Cove game when they won it. One of them got Michael Stephen’s shinguard and another got Kris Hunter’s shirt.

“It’s funny to hear stories like that but it also shows how long ago it was.”

Forres are 12th in the table, but a victory for the Can-Cans along with other results going their way could see them finish ninth.

Forres Mechanics manager Steven MacDonald

The Moray side drew 3-3 with Clachnacuddin in midweek and manager Steven MacDonald is looking for further progression.

He said: “We emphasised after last week’s disappointment against Strathspey (3-1 loss), we are playing for the future and looking for progress.

“That’s what we said to them ahead of the last two games, and we did see progress against Clach.

“I was pleased with the attitude and the performance was good too. Hopefully it will be the same against Fraserburgh, but we will have to see what we can put out.

“There are a lot of boys who are feeling calves and hamstrings. That’s part of the difficulty, I’m sure a lot of teams are noticing it’s hard to put performances together.

“We are putting in so much in midweek, and then just not getting time to recover.”

News from around the Highland League

Elsewhere, the battle to finish in the top half continues. Wick Academy would seal eighth spot if they defeat Huntly at Harmsworth Park.

But a victory for the Black and Golds could propel them into the top half.

Nairn County could also still finish eighth if they defeat Turriff United at Station Park and Wick and Clach slip up.

Fourth-placed Brora Rangers have everyone available for Keith’s visit to Dudgeon Park. The Maroons are missing Craig Reid, Kyle Irvine, Liam Duncan and Finn Yeats.

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