After an unexpected free weekend last week due to our match against Brechin falling a late victim to the weather, Queen’s are back in action on Saturday and head down the coast to face Championship side Ayr United on Scottish Cup duty.
Ahead of the trip the club media team caught up with gaffer Gus MacPherson to get his thoughts.
A cautious, but optimistic MacPherson said: “We’re under no illusions as to how difficult a game it will be on Saturday. We are up against a side from the Championship and we are away from home. We know Ayr United are a good side, their squad contains a wealth of experience, and despite having one of the lowest budgets in their league, they are competing and have had a reasonably good season so far”.
“Having said that, we go into the game in good form and with belief in our own ability. It’s vital that we get momentum in the game and give a good account of ourselves. We have already faced Championship opposition in the cup’s this season, knocking Morton out of the Irn Bru Cup and narrowly losing out to Dunfermline at East End Park in the following round. It was clear to see that on both of those occasions we competed well and gave a good account of ourselves and I can’t ask for more than that from the players”.
When asked if the underdogs tag and it being a Scottish Cup tie gave the players an added incentive to do well Gus said: “Of course it does, but this season we have been underdogs in League One on a regular basis. Our players, some of whom have little experience of playing at this level, are regularly up against sides with squads that contain guys who have spent their entire career at this level. That in itself is a challenge for them but one which they relish”.
“We go into Saturday’s game in a confident manner and we know that if we can match the standards set in recent months, we have nothing to fear”.
On the squad front Gus confirmed that defender Scott Gibson remains a doubt, rating his chances as 50/50. Gibson participated in training on Thursday night but it remains to be seen whether he will be available for selection.
The opposition: The Honest Men progressed to the Fourth Round of the Scottish Cup courtesy of a 1-0 away win over League One side Brechin City on 29th November. A 70th minute strike from Andy O’Connell proved enough to separate the sides and ensure progression for the Ayrshire side. Since then Ayr have had seven league fixtures which has saw them draw five and lose two.
Head to head: Played 117; Queen’s Park 36; Draw 25; Ayr United 56.
Last meeting of the sides: 02/11/13 Ayr United 3-2 Queen’s Park (Scottish Cup 3rd Round).
The Honest men came out winners when the sides last met just over three years ago at Somerset Park. James Brough opened the scoring for the Spiders just before the half hour mark but that lead was short lived as the home side drew level through Anthony Marenghi to ensure the scores were level at half time. Alan Lithgow gave Ayr an early second half lead before Craig Malcom doubled that lead with half an hour remaining. The Spiders pulled on back through Blair Spittal but the home side saw the game out to progress to the fourth round.
Current form: Queen’s Park WWDWLW; Ayr United LDDDLD.
Match officials: Referee – Barry Cook. Assistants – Kylie McMullan and David Doig.
Admission prices: Adults £12 & Concession £6.
Twitter: Live updates available via @QueensParkFC
Our next match: v Peterhead (a), Saturday 28th January. Kick off 3.00pm.