Programme notes from Saturday’s game against Albion Rovers…

Seasonal greetings to the officials, management, players and supporters of Albion Rovers who make the short trip from Coatbridge, for our last home match before Christmas.

With our draw against Queen’s Park last weekend, at a rain sodden Hampden Park, we are unbeaten in five and looking to extend our home win sequence to three.

Since the last edition of The Albion there have been a couple of significant departures from the Club. On the playing front, Darren Barr has taken his first step into Management by joining Annan Athletic as Peter Murphy’s Assistant. Naturally, everyone at the Club wishes Darren every success with his management / coaching career.

Whilst he is undoubtedly a big loss from a playing perspective, I doubt anyone will disagree that it was the right decision to let Darren go, given the rare opportunity provided to him to step into a management role within the SPFL. The decision was, of course, made even easier given the exemplary manner Annan Athletic recently conducted themselves in allowing Kevin Rutkiewicz to travel in the opposite direction!

The second departure is our Assistant / Reserve Team Physio, Nicola Mclntyre. Nicola’s other work commitments, combined with living in Glenrothes, resulted in her deciding that she could not guarantee the commitment her role demanded; a decision that I fully understand, especially with the harsher winter weather and associated travel conditions on the way.  Nicola was only with us for a relatively short time but was a popular and respected figure in and around the treatment room and she will be sorely missed.  The search to secure a replacement is underway!

In taking this festive opportunity to thank everyone who has given of their time to assist in and around the Club over the course of the last year, I would like to make specific mention of one individual whose contribution is particularly invaluable and indeed visible, worldwide! Ben McAdam – Mr Stirling Albion TV – has attended every game this season, home and away, bar one when had the “call of duty” to attend a family wedding!

Without fear of contradiction, I can state his highlights packages, including post-match interviews, compare favourably with any throughout the SPFL. Ben is still at school but is already a relative veteran, having previously held the videography role at Linlithgow Rose; indeed, he covered our Scottish Cup match at Prestonfield Park in October 2016!  A big shout out as well to his taxi driver (usually Mum or Grandad) as Ben has still to pass his driving test!

Who knows what 2019 holds but with nine points to play for in the few remaining weeks of 2018, a maximum haul would be a great way to see out the Old and bring in the New!

Have a great Christmas and see you back at Forthbank on the 29th!

Stuart Brown
SAFC Chairman