Dunfermline Athletic

Jim Jefferies on Thursday

Friday, 14th Mar 2014

13/03/14: JJ - "We have to prepare for a strong Rangers team and they have got a squad strong enough to do it.

JIM JEFFERIES

For the trip to Ibrox on Saturday Jim Jefferies will be without strikers Jordan Moore and Ryan Wallace both out and there are still some doubts over the fitness of Josh Falkingham who missed last Saturday's game against Stenhousemuir with an Achilles problem.

The Manager offered a little more on the injury to Ryan:-

"He made an attempt to come back in the reserves on Tuesday night but felt it. The reason we played him was to test it but I think it's about, rather than rush him back, making sure that he's ready for the run-in and especially the play-offs.

"So we'll need to monitor that. I had planned to put him on the bench and bring him on the last 20 minutes. It's probably a good thing now that he's tested it now - I'd hate to have brought him back and he broke down again and lost him for another two or three weeks.  At least we know he's not ready yet."

Ryan Wallace is replaced by Gavin McMillan

JJ doesn't think that any celebrations for winning the League One title on Wednesday or the Scottish Cup replay against Albion Rovers two days later will have any affect on the performance on Saturday:-

"Rangers are Rangers and, whether Ally makes a few changes or plans for the game on Monday, whatever team they put out they expect to win every game. So we're not looking at it any differently.

"If he brings in fresh faces, they will be buzzing and looking to impress, so we're not going into the game thinking Rangers are going to take their foot off the pedal and relax. We can't prepare for that - we have to prepare for a strong Rangers team and they have got a squad strong enough to do it.

"Nicky Clark came back off the bench on Wednesday night, Dean Shiels was on the bench as well, and they have got so many options now.

"They've won the Championship and I texted Coisty on Wednesday night to say they thoroughly deserved it because no matter what people think of them they can only beat what's in front of them and at the end of the day they've gone through the league with only two draws.

"They deserve it, I told Ally that on Wednesday night, and it's congratulations to them. They'll probably want to stay the season unbeaten and there are wee things in there to keep them going, but at the end of the day we'll just be planning to play a very strong Rangers team. The expectations at that club are to win every week."

JIM JEFFERIES

The Manager feels that Rangers will have their own little agendas to perform and Rangers continue that winning mentality:-

"What we've got to do is go and learn from the three games we've played against them.
You look at them, 3-1, 4-0 and 4-0, and the very first game I had boys who had not even been at Ibrox before - it was like putting down a marker of how we would do and I thought we acquitted ourselves well that night.

"The second game was another game where we played extremely well in the opening half hour, could have been in front ourselves, but they scored a good goal and I think there's no doubt in the three games that's been the best they've played.. So they know that they have got to be on their game to play against us."

Ross Forbes JONATHAN PAGE  Danny Grainger
Ross Forbes, Jonathan Page and Danny Grainger

The Pars were a bit unfortunate in the cup tie because the three new boys, Ross Forbes, Jonathan Page and Danny Grainger were all cup tied. Jim Jefferies ended up fielding the inexperienced Ryan Williamson and Lewis Martin:-

"The two 17-year-olds had not played much in that sort of situation, they made a couple of mistakes early and we got punished for it. It took all the pressure off Rangers and they went on to win comfortably, although it was probably our poorest display of the season. Having said that we lost a goal just after half-time and that was it.

"But the second game I thought we really played well that night. Rangers scored a really well-worked goal and we can point to where we went wrong on it, but the three others were gifts. After the game I told the players they can maybe make mistakes against other teams but they won't get away with it against a team with the quality of Rangers.

"So we need to be organised, go there and try and win the match, and we've got to do everything right. We've got to have belief and compete very well, so we'll see what happens. But we might have an advantage with the fact that we're maybe more experienced than we have been in the past against them, although having said that we'll be missing players who have played there and did well in the past."

JIM JEFFERIES LIF£LINE




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