Dunfermline Athletic

No Easy Fixtures

Friday, 17th Jun 2022

17/06/22: JMc - “You have to work harder than your opponents on the day to get success in football. Nothing comes easy.”

Dunfermline manager James McPake expressed his excitement with the release of the league fixtures for next season but his first concern is that it is a tough league:-

“We need to be right and realise that we are a League One club. We are where we are for a reason and we have no divine right to say for example that on 8th October that we are going to go away to Alloa and comfortably win. No, we have to earn the right to go on that date to maybe grind it out to get a positive result.

“The first game that I’m looking at is the East Fife and Premier Sports Cup games. Get through these league cup games, hopefully successfully before we get into league business. It is exciting when you see the fixtures, you pick out the Falkirk games and have a look where you are going this week and that week. You start to see a bit of rhythm to a season which I have missed.

“I have only been out fourteen weeks but I’ve missed that - looking out for where I will be that Saturday. It is great for the fans to be able to plan the trips.

“I cannot guarantee that we are going to win games, nobody can, but what I can guarantee - whether it is at East End Park, Alloa, Peterhead - is that we are going to leave every single ounce of energy out on the pitch. That is the thing that this group of lads will guarantee under our leadership.

“Football throws up strange scenarios now and again, you cannot guarantee wins and I couldn’t pick a game where I could say that we will definitely win that. But in everyone of them we will give everything that we have got for Dunfermline Athletic Football Club to be successful.

“If it’s at home we want fans walking away saying ‘you know what, the boys gave everything today’ or if it’s away they are jumping on their buses or into their cars and saying ‘the boys gave everything today’. That is the consistency and what they will see from a Dunfermline Athletic team this season. The effort is going to be sky high, giving everything for this football club and those supporters.”

Fans will immediately be searching for the dates of the local derbies against Falkirk and Kelty Hearts but James stressed that it doesn’t matter who the opponents are:-

“Peterhead, Clyde, Airdrie, Queen of the South - we approach every game the same with a work rate where nobody outworks us or outfights us. That is up to us as coaches and we can fine tune and polish how we play, what way we play and how we approach this game and that game.

“First and foremost we have to work hard. If you don’t do that we’d be as well not going to the games. You have to work harder than your opponents on the day to get success in football. Nothing comes easy.”

Peterhead will be the only other team in League One with a grass pitch but James feels that makes no difference:-

“I have a very good record at my previous club on Astro. We had a grass pitch and you modify your training by going to train on Astro when you need to. We have good grass pitches to train on but I will never ever turn round and blame a surface.

“You could play on a carpet but you still have to outwork and outfight and stand out with that badge sticking out to show that we are Dunfermline Athletic and you are going to work really hard to beat us.”

Alloa Athletic will be the first league opponents on 30th July, the opening day but because the teams meet in the Premier Sports Cup the week before it will be two Saturdays at home to the same opponents. James reflected:-

“That’s football, as a player it has happened to me. I have been successful in play offs and played teams back to back over two legged ties. It isn’t an issue, I want to win both games.”

James McPake discussed fixtures with Jordan Burt for PARStv

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