THE BO’NESS United squad has a spring in its step ahead of tomorrow’s Emirates Scottish Junior Cup opener against Whitletts Victoria.
Victory at Hill of Beath last weekend saw the first win of the new Super League campaign and gave the team, under interim boss Allan McGonigal, an important confidence boost as well as three precious points.
McGonigal changed to a 4-3-3 formation and said the 2-1 scoreline belied how well the team played and how convincing a win it was.
Not only was it the BUs first ever victory at Keir’s Park, McGonigal said: “I think it was also their first win in 12 or 13 attempts against a Super League team. That tells you how much it meant.”
While unable to take issue with the red card dished out to Jay Shields, McGonigal said: “It didn’t take away the gloss of the game. It was all about the players and how much they wanted to win.”
Goalkeeper Stewart Baillie is ruled out of tomorrow’s clash having a scan after going over on his knee at training.
McGonigal has cover in the form of Connor Wallace, on loan from Livingston Juniors.
With a positive mood in the camp under his stewardship, McGonigal, who hasn’t ruled out a permanent return, said: “My standards are high but so are the rewards.”
He is still in talks over possible new players and called for patience and continued support from the fans.
Looking ahead to tomorrow’s visitors, he said: “You always know what you are going to get. A team from Glasgow or Ayrshire will be a bit gallus, organised and disciplined.
“They have had a couple of good seasons but if we go out and play we will be fine.”
At Prestonfield, Linlithgow Rose will be looking to extend their lead at the top of the Super League as they received a bye in the Junior Cup tournament.
They already sit three points clear after just three matches and, if results go their way this weekend, they could go six clear.
Boss Mark Bradley said: “If we can win the game it would be a great boost for the players and the team psychologically. We want to be at the top and it’s great to be sitting there so soon.”
But Bradley knows Camelon boss, and former Rose teammate, Danny Smith will still be smarting after their pre-season clash in the Vic Wood Memorial Trophy in which the Rose hammered their opponents 5-1 on the day.
He said: “Camelon are always a hard team to beat and Danny will make sure there will not be a scoreline similar to that this time around.”
But after a crushing victory over Lochee last weekend, Bradley is confident his side can do it again.
He said: “We totally dominated the game against Lochee and although we allowed them to score two goals, we continued to play football and ran out worthy winners.”
Bradley this week signed defender Willie Wilson to strengthen his side over the coming months.
He said: “We know we are going to have players out with injuries ansd supension in the weeks ahead so it was good to bring in Willie who is a player with bags of experience.”
Wilson was Bo’ness United’s assistant manager last season and has played with Bathgate and Airdrie.
Looking to tomorrow’s match, Bradley has Mark Tyrell, Roddy MacLennan and David Dunn back in contention. Callum Smith is still unavailable.