It’s been said too many times to mention in recent weeks and months that the next game is the most important one, but it’s a phrase that rings more true than ever as we prepare to take on Albion Rovers at Hampden. With just four games remaining; the teams being separated by just one point – and the fight for a play-off spot tighter than ever, it’s all to play for at the National Stadium this weekend.
Ahead of the game the club media team spoke to gaffer Gus MacPherson to gather his thoughts.
Firstly, reflecting on last Saturday’s important 2-0 win over Peterhead, a delighted MacPherson said: “It was a great three points and I was very happy with how hard we worked to ensure we won the game. It was a hard game, it’s been like that since the start of the season though, but we’ve demonstrated on numerous occasion that the hard work does pay off with rewards like that.
“Peterhead went into the game knowing they had to win it and at times we did have to withstand pressure, which we expected, but we did that well and exploited the spaces we created at the other end of the park through Dario Zanatta and Dvaid Galt.
“It was key that we got the first goal. It gave us something to defend, but the second goal was equally as important. It’s been shown on a number of occasions in this league this season that a one goal lead is never enough. The second goal relaxed us a little and we were able to see the game out.”
Looking forward to the visit of Rovers, Gus said: “It goes without saying that we will be looking to continue the momentum that we have been building in recent weeks. The manner of the performances we have seen from the players has been very pleasing and that is something which we need to work to continue until the end of the season.
“It’s less than a fortnight since we last faced Albion Rovers and we saw on that occasion what a good side they are. They have, like ourselves, since recorded an impressive win, beating Stranraer 3-0 last weekend and we will expect another tough game.
“It will be a different type of match here at Hampden, but they’ll be up for the challenge. Having said that we can go into the game high in confidence and with the knowledge that should we match the performances of recent weeks, there’s every chance we can take something from the 90 minutes.”
Gus confirmed that his squad will be bolstered by the return of midfielder Jamie McKernon who missed out through suspension last Saturday and midfielder Conor McVey who missed out through injury. Defenders Ross Millen and Scott Gibson remain side-lined with injury.
The opposition: Rovers go into the game sitting seventh place in the league, one place and one point behind the Spiders. Their last result was an impressive 3-0 home win against Stranraer, when Paul Willis, Ryan Wallace and a Morgyn Neill own goal sealed all three points.
Head to head: Played 211; Queen’s Park 74; Draw 61; Albion Rovers 76.
Previous meetings this season: 01/10/2016 – Albion Rovers 2-0 Queen’s Park; 10/12/2016 – Queen’s Park 2-1 Albion Rovers; 04/04/2017 – Albion Rovers 1-1 Queen’s Park.
Current form: Queen’s Park DDDDDW; Albion Rovers DWWDDW.
Match officials: Referee – Greg Aitken. Assistants – Stephen Mitchell and Ryan Oliver.
Admission prices: Adults £12; Concession (Senior Citizen/Children/Unemployed) £2; Parent & Child £13 (plus £1 for each additional accompanied child).
Twitter: Live updates available via @QueensParkFC.
Other League One fixtures: Alloa Athletic v Brechin City; East Fife v Peterhead; Stenhousemuir v Livingston; Stranraer v Airdrieonians.
Our next match: April 22, 2017 v Livingston at Tony Macaroni Arena. Kick off 3pm.