Albion match preview

Match Preview
Ayr United vs. Albion Rovers
Ladbrokes League 1
Saturday 9th April 2016. Kick-off 3pm

On Saturday, Ayr United return to action at Somerset Park with Albion Rovers the visitors. With second-placed Peterhead not in action this weekend, United have the opportunity to close the gap on the Blue Toon to just one point in the search for home advantage in the second-leg of the upcoming promotion play-off semi-final between the two sides.

The Honest Men’s defeat to Cowdenbeath last Saturday was their fourth in five matches away from home – but at home Ian McCall’s men have won four of their last five. United have gone 20 games since last drawing a match.
Albion Rovers require just three points to confirm their League 1 safety – but are without a win in their last eight games. Last weekend, they were narrowly edged out by Champions Dunfermline at Cliftonhill, Faissal El-Bakhtaoui scoring with just three minutes on the clock.

If Darren Young’s side can return to winning ways a place in the promotion play-offs is still in reach – the Coatbridge side are six points behind fourth placed Stranraer who, like Peterhead, are not in action this weekend.

Team News: Jamie Adams, Paddy Boyle and Brian Gilmour all miss out however none of the trio are far away from a return.

Ian says: “Quite simply last week against Cowdenbeath wasn’t good enough. It certainly isn’t the type of display we expect from the group of players that we have and today we will be looking to put that right. Albion have had a great season to date after promotion and they have 4th place in their sights so have everything to play for. We need to make sure and start the game well and make sure we are finishing well as we will always create chances at Somerset.”

Head-to-Head:
Ayr United wins – 49
Draws – 12
Albion Rovers wins – 30

In 48 visits to Somerset Park, Albion Rovers have recorded 9 wins and have lost on their last 4 trips to the Ayrshire coast.

Last meeting: three first half goals, two from Jordan Preston and a ‘Stevo special’, saw United earn all three points when the sides last met – at Cliftonhill in January. Ally Love netted a late consolation. The result avenged United’s 3-0 defeat in Coatbridge on the opening day of the season.

The ‘Vers last match at Somerset was in November when Alan Trouten scored the only goal of the game.
On this date: in 2011 Ayr United faced Forfar Athletic at Somerset Park and raced to a two-goal lead in the first 14 minutes after goals from Stuart Bannigan and Mark Roberts. Michael Bolochowechyj scored for the visitors with 15 minutes to go but Bannigan’s second goal seven minutes later secured the victory.

Match Officials:
Referee – Gavin Duncan
Assistant Referee 1 – Stuart Hodge
Assistant Referee 2 – Simon McLean

Admission: £15 for adults, £8 for concessions and £18 parent and child.