Dunfermline Athletic

Managers post Arbroath

Saturday, 28th Nov 2020

Link to audio of both managers post match interviews

- - Listen to this Stevie Crawford interview

This was Stevie Crawford’s first win at Arbroath as Dunfermline manager, a win that takes his team into the draw for the quarter finals of this season’s Betfred Cup. He said that it was very pleasing coming on the back of a good home win over the favourites to lift the Championship title:-

“There were a lot of positivity and plaudits from the Hearts game. This was a different type of game but we knew that it was going to be competitive today. Arbroath’s home record is exceptional and we knew that it wasn’t going to be an easy tie today. They would have fancied their chances to progress as we did as well.

“The application from the boys, not just from the first minute today, I have seen it on the training ground from Monday morning - there is nobody getting carried away. It is a good sign for us as a club because if you get excited it is easy to lose focus and then you become unstuck. It is very pleasing, a very hard fought victory that we will take a lot of pleasure from and go down the road knowing that we will be able to watch the draw tomorrow.”

The manager revealed that his one change to his starting eleven - Iain Wilson for Steven Whittaker - was an enforced one:-

“Unfortunately Steven had picked up an injury during the week, he had a tweak on his hamstring and we didn’t want to risk anything with that. Maybe it was a little fatigue after all the work he did in the Hearts game but we didn’t think that it was the right decision to take a chance on him.

“We knew that it was going to be a very tough game. I thought that the line up that started the Hearts game were terrific and for the first time this year, in my own head I was going to go with the same starting eleven that started against Hearts. But you know Iain Wilson has come in and shown that there is development in him and he slotted into that midfield alongside Kerr McInroy today and did well.”

Ryan Dow opened the scoring in 28 minutes. SC disagreed that it was a ‘relief’ to score that goal:-

“We knew that it was going to be tough opening period to the game. I came up and watched Arbroath last week against Morton and they had a lot of possession of the ball, they have got creative players in their team and we had to stand up to that. That was the pleasing thing.

“Then I think we grew into the game. Ryan took his goal extremely well and Euan Murray has managed to notch another one to his tally. Declan got a wee flick, just enough to put the keeper off and make him spill it. I thought we went in at half time rightly ahead in the game.

“Dick (Campbell) then made a couple of substitutions at half time and brought on his more attack minded players in the wide areas. Although he hadn’t changed the formation with Bobby Linn and Dale Hilson. They caused us a little bit of bother and at that point when we lost the goal we remained very focused.

“It is pleasing that even when we lost the goal we didn’t become disjointed and all over the place. We did enough after that to see us over the finishing line.”

Dick Campbell disputed the penalty decision against his team seven minutes from the end:-

“I have not actually seen the penalty decision back but it will always happen that there will be incidents in games. If Dick has views on it I am not going to say otherwise, I didn’t see it at the time but I thought the way my players claimed for it, they thought that it was a penalty kick.

“I then go back to the lead up to their goal, I thought Ryan Dow got a touch on one round the corner. The boys clattered into him and we didn’t get the free kick. The pleasing thing for me is that we are not standing here talking about that and the game becoming 2-2 or possibly 3-2 to Arbroath. I am actually standing here saying that the team remained focused.

“We were disappointed that the foul wasn’t given, referees have a difficult job and sometimes you get a decision for you, sometimes you don’t but I think we thoroughly deserved to win the game at the end of the day.

“Our objective when we set out was to qualify out of the group stage and I said during the week in the lead up to this game that it was a difficult group. We had to deal with Kilmarnock and three very good League One sides and we managed to come out the group as a seeded side.

“We knew coming up to Arbroath that is was going to be another challenge at a very difficult place. Tomorrow it will bring an excitement again to the club, the supporters will be delighted with it, the players and the coaching staff and everybody connected to the club. We just have to make sure, whoever we draw in the next round we go and enjoy it and make sure all the hard work that we have done up until now gives ourselves an opportunity to go and progress further in the tournament “

- - Hear the post match comments of Dick Campbell

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