From the September edition of the Albion programme
A disjointed opening period to our SPFL2 2016/17 campaign with a blank weekend at the beginning of September, following on from a disappointing result at Gayfield to conclude August.
The 5-3 defeat at the hands of Arbroath was a tough one to take based on our opening “goal” being incorrectly disallowed for offside and a penalty decision that was subsequently proved beyond all doubt to be a great challenge by Ross McMillan.
However, the bottom line is we shipped five goals so arguments about decisions changing the outcome of the game are a bit weak and everyone is focused on getting back on track, starting now!
With the blank weekend we’ve only three fixtures in September, two of which are at home, against SPFL newcomers Edinburgh City, and Elgin City, who have already travelled to Forthbank this season on Betfred Cup duty. Sandwiched in between is an away fixture against the early pace-setters, Forfar Athletic.
Whilst everyone associated with Elgin City is, as ever, most welcome at Forthbank, I extend an especially warm welcome to the officials, management, players and supporters of Edinburgh City.
They’ve had a tough start to life in the SPFL, with four defeats in four but, by all accounts, they have competed well, particularly in their last fixture against Berwick Rangers, where popular opinion was that they were very unlucky not to take at least a share of the points.
Acting as convivial hosts, however, is confined to off the pitch; it’s Stuart McLaren’s and the players’ job to make sure City remain pointless after five and that we inflict a second defeat on Elgin!
Away from first team affairs, Andy Todd, Community Engagement Manager, supported by his growing band of Community Coaches, has recently concluded a very successful summer programme of Holiday Classes and with the schools now back in session, this has moved on to Community Classes which are also proving to be extremely popular.
Our role in the community is hugely important to the Club and I’m proud of the progress we’ve made through Andy’s hard work and dedication. Combined with the fast-growing Junior Academy, and the continuing success of our Youth Development, Stirling Albion is adding real value to an increasing number of families across our catchment area.
Finally, a word (or several!) on finance… as supporters will be aware, we inherited a very substantial debt when the Supporters’ Trust bought the Club in June 2010.
The first year of ownership saw little change to this position but I’m delighted to be able to report that under my stewardship, and with the very considerable support of my Executive Board colleagues, we have progressed to the point where the current forecast is we will be debt free by the end of this financial year. Watch this space for updates on this in the coming months.
C’mon the Binos!
Chairman & Operations Director