Falkirk match preview

Match Preview
Ayr United vs. Falkirk
Ladbrokes Championship
Saturday 11th March 2017

On Saturday, Ayr United return to Championship action when on form Falkirk are the visitors to Somerset Park. After recording a first league win since October against Raith Rovers, and a spirited performance in the Scottish Cup away to the holders Hibernian, Ian McCall’s men will be looking for another vital three points in the battle to stay in the Championship.

This week saw Peter Houston pick up the Manger of the Month award. The Bairns are unbeaten in eight league games since the turn of the year and have climbed to second place in the league table, six points behind Hibs. Last weekend, Falkirk defeated Queen of the South 2-0 away from home to open up an 11 points advantage over the Doonhamers as the Bairns close in on securing a play-off place.

Team News: Scott McKenna is suspended. Ross Docherty, Jamie Adams, Paul Cairney and Peter Murphy are out injured.

Ian McCall says: “We will be saying this every week until the end of the season but it is a huge game, they all are now. Our home performances haven’t been good enough however we got 3 points in our last match at Somerset and we need to take confidence from that and push on now. Our fans were magnificent at Easter Road last week and it would be a big help to get that kind of backing tomorrow. Declan McDaid and Robbie Crawford trained on Thursday and come back into the squad for the match as does Farid.”

Head-to-Head (at Somerset Park):
Ayr United wins – 29
Draws – 18
Falkirk wins –24

A Falkirk goal on Saturday will be their 100th at Somerset Park.
Last meeting: The sides played out a 1-1 draw in their last meeting in mid-January. Gary Harkins opened the scoring for Ayr at the Falkirk Stadium but Peter Grant equalised on the stroke of half-time. Falkirk recorded a 1-0 win at Somerset Park in the league in November with an early James Craigen strike but were defeated by the same scoreline by the Honest Men in the Challenge Cup in October.

On this day: In 2008, Ayr United defeated Ross County 4-2 away from home. Goals from Gareth Wardlaw, Alex Williams and, either side of half-time, Ryan Stevenson saw the Honest Men establish a 4-0 lead in this Tuesday night fixture. Late goals from Sean Higgins and Michael Gardyne were unable to dampen the spirits of the small band of travelling supporters who made the long midweek journey to Dingwall.

Match Officials:
Referee – Steven McLean
Assistant Referee 1 – Jordan Stokoe
Assistant Referee 2 – David Doig

Admission:
Adults – £17
Concessions (Over 65/Student) – £10
Child (under 16) – £5

Falkirk fans will occupy the West Stand (Main Stand) and Enclosure. Entry is via turnstiles 9 & 10.