East Fife get their 2017-18 league campaign underway tomorrow when they make the long journey to Stair Park to face Stranraer, co-incidentally the venue of the final game of last season.
Manager Darren Young will have been heartened by the 3-2 win against Elgin City in his side’s last outing and will be hoping that the lengthy injury list is beginning to improve following influential midfielder Kyle Wilkie’s return to the team after seven months on the sidelines. The recent loan signing of Greg Hurst from St Johnstone has also given the squad a boost ahead of the game.
Stranraer, like the Methil men, faced a challenging Betfred League Cup set of opponents, coming up against Partick Thistle, St Mirren, Livingston and Airdrieonians in their section. Although not registering a win, the Stair Parkers put in a disciplined performance against Premiership opposition at Firhill last Saturday before losing out to a late goal, and will be looking forward to a league season opener against a side that they have a good record against in recent years. Manager Stevie Farrell has made several key signings during the close season including former Bayview favourite Ryan Wallace.
As previously mentioned, the Fifers have found points hard to come by in previous visits to Stranraer recently. Indeed you have to go as far back as September 2012 to find an East Fife win, when doubles from Gareth Wardlaw and Jamie Pollock helped secure a memorable 6-2 success. Bobby Barr and Paul McManus were also on target that afternoon.