Fort William and Clachnacuddin bring down the curtain on the Highland League season tonight when they meet at Claggan Park.
Both teams still have something to play for. A win for the Lochaber club would allow them to avoid the wooden spoon for the first time in three years, leaving Rothes propping up the rest, while three points for the Lilywhites would see them leapfrog Turriff United into 11th place.
Fort caretaker-manager Calum MacLean said: “It would be great to get ourselves off the bottom of the table, so I’m not expecting your typical end-of-season encounter. As it is on a Friday night we will probably have our biggest crowd of the season at Claggan.
“We are all looking forward to the game. Clach did really well to win the League Cup last weekend by beating Buckie Thistle on penalties. I was really pleased for their manager Iain Polworth and particularly for their goalkeeper John Campbell, who lives and works in Lochaber.
“I remember the last time I was in charge at the Fort. Aberdeenshire Shield winners Turriff United arrived at Claggan on a high and we beat them 3-1.
“I have good vibes about this one and everyone is going to be up for it. We will be without central defenders Jonathan Cooper and Darren Quigg, due to work commitments, but our inspirational skipper Andy Martin is now free from suspension and will be in his usual place at centre half.”
Clach manager Iain Polworth is expecting a hard match. He said: “I don’t think there will be any League Cup hangover for us but we did have to patch up several players for last week’s final. You can only do that once and we won’t be taking any risks with them tomorrow night.
“Scott Graham and Martin Laing are both struggling to be fit, but Ross Grant, Neil Macdonald, Steven Mackenzie, Martin Callum and top-scorer Paul Brindle are all missing.
“Fort have improved and we are expecting a really tough game, so the players who come into the side will really have to be up for it.”