An eleven game unbeaten run is one thing, but Kris Faulds is well aware that Shire’s title ambitions will depend just as much on winning an encounter like Sunday’s Lowland League clash with Spartans at Ochilview.
While Shire have been harvesting points against all-comers since the end of September it hasn’t brought the league leaders very much closer, and the midfielder knows not only would a win help that process, it would also be a set back for third-place Spartans who have identical ambitions.
The stated aim of winning the Lowland League has been hampered by 1-0 defeats against East Kilbride an Spartans earlier in the season. That Spartans reverse in September was the last time John Sludden’s men lost in the league and Kris and his team mates are determined to make up for it.
“It’s a big game but if we get the win then that sets us up nicely,” said Kris. “We came into this league knowing that we would be competing for the title so it’s one of those games we know we need to win if we want to be at the top.”
The September defeat at Ainslie Park still hurts for Shire and Kris says it’s one the team wants to avenge. The midfielder says that game, and the equally narrow loss at the current league leaders were setbacks, but he remains confident the players can get it right this time round.
“We performed in them but we didn’t get the result we wanted,” he said of the two previous games against the other two clubs in the Lowland League top three. “Hopefully this time the boys will go and get the result we require.
“There was nothing in the game the last time,” said the Shire midfielder of the Ainslie Park game which Shire lost to an injury-time penalty kick. “If anything we had the better opportunities. It was the same in the game against East Kilbride where we had chances but they just didn’t fall. This time we aim to make that right.”
Kris recognises it’s likely to be a different sort of challenge to the one Shire have faced in the last few weeks.
Where once the strikers were scoring goals for fun against teams who attacked just as much themselves, the last three league encounters have seen Shire work hard to break down solid and very tight defences.
Kris says this week’s match, one both teams will look to win rather than simply sit in, should be altogether different.
“I would imagine they will come and attack us rather than sit in like Edinburgh (University),” he said. “It’s as big as game for them as it is for us so they will be up for it.”
Kris and the rest of the Shire team will need some great support on Sunday at Ochilview to help them overcome a very strong Spartans team. We need as many fans as possible to be there to lend a hand. Please come along and play your part because it could make all the difference.