Cove Rangers manager John Sheran believes his players have nothing to lose and everything to gain when they face Premiership side Motherwell at Fir Park tomorrow in the fourth round of the Scottish Cup.
The Highland League men are huge underdogs against their Scottish Premiership opponents but Sheran hopes the occasion will bring out the best in his players.
He said: “When the carrot of playing a Premiership club on a Premiership ground was dangled before we played our third-round replay against Formartine United it added to the players’ hunger to get through.
“Most of them have never played against one of the top teams in the country on their own ground. They have all been looking forward to it. That may have affected our league form a wee bit in the last couple of games.
“We are all looking forward to it. Training this week has been buzzing and we will be ready. We do have attack-minded players with pace who can hurt any team, such as Connor Scully, Daryl Nicol, Daniel Park and Blair Yule.
“That gives us a little bit of hope but we will have to defend really well and make sure we contain their threat because they are one of the form teams in the top flight. Anyone who has watched us play in the Highland League will be aware that we are a team which likes to have a go.
“We have attacking players. We know that it is going to be a tough task but it is one that we are looking forward to and we will get stuck in when the day comes.”
Sheran is looking forward to leading his team at a Premiership ground for the first time.
He said: “Whether it be the chairman, right down to the two lads who clean the boots, everyone is looking forward to this one.
“For me, having the opportunity of managing Cove against a Premiership team in their own stadium is a first, as it is for my assistant Graeme Mathieson.
“However, we do have quite a bit of experience in the squad, such as Roy McBain and Stuart Duff, who have played at a higher level.
“That will be invaluable for the rest of the guys on the day as well.”