Manager on ThursdayThursday, 7th Jul 2022
07/07/22: JMc - “We know that they will be up for it, but so will we.
Dunfermline Athletic kick off their competitive season on Saturday away to Stevie Crawford’s East Fife and Pars manager James McPake claims that he has formed his opinion on what is starting eleven might be and he is ready for the challenges to begin:-
“The pre-season has been excellent. It is a shortened pre-season, that is the nature of Scottish football. We`ve been relatively lucky with injury, touch wood nothing changes between now and Saturday, but we`ll be ready. We`re building towards how we`re going to approach the East Fife game.
“The Premier Sports Cup is a serious competition and, I said that from day one, we`re building towards the ninth of July. It`s a few days away and we`ll be ready for that.
“It makes it tough, the game coming round quick, but it also makes it exciting because, as a player, you don`t like pre-season. It was all running and then not competitive games, but when the real competitive games start, you want to be involved in them.
“It`s on an astro pitch, no problem - we`ve had plenty of work on that in the pre-season. We`ll work on that in the next few days.”
James believes that East Fife with an ex-manager and ex-player of Dunfermline football club in charge, have got plenty of motivation. He continued:-
“We know that they will be up for it, but so will we. It`ll be a tough game. It`s a tough group, all groups and all stages are tough. In this cup, there`s always shocks in it, so there`s teams in there that will be trying to win games, and East Fife will be looking forward to it and they will fancy it with us going there.
“We`ll take a good support, they`ll have a decent support I would imagine as well, so it`ll be a real competitive game that we`re looking forward to. We`re not thinking about the league at the minute. Everything`s focused on East Fife, and then we`re right into Buckie then Ross County the following week, midweek then Saturday.
“It is a big nine or ten days coming up for the football club, so we need to be ready, which we are. As a manager, pre-season is vital, and you`re building and implementing some of your principles, your tactics, whatever people want to call them, but you`re also getting the boys fit and ready to go. We feel we`re in that place and I can`t wait for Saturday now.”
Is there a possibility of additions to the squad before Saturday?
“We`re working ever so hard. Even speaking to Derek McInnes, it has been a slow window. He`s feeling that as well. It`s not an excuse, and we are working very hard, but we`ll see what comes around. It`s a short turnaround between now and Saturday. If there`s any ins, great, if not then we`re prepared and ready to go.”
The Kilmarnock game was an important step towards the competitive season, a good game against a Premiership side so that pleased the manager. He has concerns over keeper Deniz Mehmet, centre back Rhys Breen and midfielder Matty Todd who took a knock late in the friendly but maintained that the withdrawals of the keeper in the warm up and Rhys just four minutes into the second half were precautionary.
Watch James McPake talk to Jordan Burt for PARStv
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