Linlithgow boss hopeful of Forfar cup upset

Linlithgow celebrate a goal against Wick in the last round
Linlithgow celebrate a goal against Wick in the last round

Linlithgow Rose boss Davie McGlynn believes his side can upset the odds against Forfar Athletic on Saturday and become the first junior side to reach the last 16 of the Scottish Cup.

Rose welcome the League One outfit to Prestonfield knowing that the visitors are odds-on favourites to progress from the fourth round tie.

But while McGlynn accepts his side are underdogs, he says that doesn’t mean they don’t have a chance.

He said: “We’re really looking forward it, it’s a break from the league and then the following week we have the Scottish Junior Cup which is actually the priority.

“But it’s great to test yourself against other managers and for the players to test themselves against teams from a higher league.

“I watched Forfar against Dunfermline but that probably wasn’t the greatest game to see them in. Dunfermline are a step ahead of them, being a full-time team playing against part-time players so it gave a bit of a false impression because Forfar sat in.

“They were a bit more negative than they would normally be and I would expect them to adopt a more positive approach on Saturday.

“I would like to think we’ll still be able to have a decent amount of possession but you have to be realistic. We are up against a First Division side so we could be on the back foot for long spells.

“We have been dominating most games this season and are favourites to win just about every week so it will make a change going into this one as the underdogs.

“The pressure is off us and on Forfar but that doesn’t mean we don’t think we can win. You want to win every game you play and we’ll be prepared with a game plan in mind to win.

“To win a Super League match you need to have seven or eight boys at the top of their game, you can carry two or three if you have to.

“But on Saturday we’ll need everyone on top of their game. Not just the 11 who start but everyone in the squad, whether they’re playing or not, will have a job in making sure everyone is properly focussed and so on.”

It’s the second time that Linlithgow have reached the last 32 of the competition. They did it in 2008 and since then three other junior sides - Irvine Meadow, Auchinleck Talbot and Bo’ness United - have done likewise. But none went any further.

McGlynn said: “It’s a great achievement for us to get as far as we have, but it would be great to get through and have the chance to maybe get Celtic or Rangers away in the next round. That’s a real financial boost for any club.

“And although Forfar may be favourites we’ve got a chance - that’s for sure.”

Meanwhile McGlynn says he is delighted to snap up long-term target Connor Kelly who has switched to Prestonfield from Sauchie.

The striker, who netted a hat-trick on his Sauchie debut against Bonnyrigg Rose, replaces Callum Robertson eho has gone back to Raith Rovers following the compeletion of his loan period.

McGlynn said: “It’s one in, one out. I’ve been trying to get Connor for a while, he’s a player that I really like. He’s got pace and gets in behind defences.

“He got a hat-trick against Falkirk and did really well so he’ll be in the squad for Saturday. Bringing him in means there’s extra competition for places among the strikers and that gives everybody an edge.”

Rose have also agreed a deal to keep cup goal hero Ryan Baptie, on loan from Peterhead, until the end of the season.

McGlynn said: “Jim McNally’s been great and appreciates the benefits of him being here and playing regularly with us.”