Ayr United begin life after Mark Roberts on Saturday when Stirling Albion are the visitors to Somerset Park, our final home match of 2014. Andy Millen takes charge of the team as the search for a new manager gets underway. The Honest Men’s last home win came on the 23rd August – the same date that on which Stirling Albion recorded their only league win of the season versus Stenhousemuir, a 5-4 victory at Ochilview.
Stirling boss Stuart McLaren is still looking for his first league win following his appointment at the start of November. The Bino’s went down to a 2-1 defeat at Forfar last weekend and are eight points adrift at the foot of the table.
Read on for our match preview:
Andy says: “Obviously this has been a tough few days however the players are fully focused on Saturdays game. They are a hard working group and have trained well all week. They know they have a job to do and the importance of getting a result against Stirling. There’s every chance that their new manager could be watching them from the stands so its really important they make a good first impression. The group know they have under achieved and they need to have courage on Saturday to go out there and believe in themselves and make things happen.”
Team news: Dale Keenans spell with the club has ended and Adam Cummins will play his last game before returning to Motherwell. Everyone else is fit.
Ayr have lost nine of their last ten league games and their last six at home.
Stirling Albion’s only win in their last 16 matches came on penalties versus Hurlford United in a Scottish Cup replay at Forthbank. The Bino’s have lost their last five League 1 matches on the road.
Head-to-Head (League): Ayr United wins – 25 Draws – 24 Stirling Albion wins – 25
Albion are without a win in their last five visits to Somerset Park but did record a 5-2 victory in December 2005.
Last Meeting: Martin Grehan put Stirling Albion ahead after 14 minutes on their last visit to Somerset Park in April 2009 but United were 2-1 up before half-time thanks to a David Gormley double. Alex Williams completed the scoring in the 89th minute after the Bino’s had Sean Roycroft sent-off. United were also 3-1 winners when the sides met at Forthbank in August.
On this day: Ayr have a poor record on 20th December, winning just two of 14 fixtures on this date. United’s last home match on this date was a 1-1 draw with Heart of Midlothian in 1975.
Match Officials: Referee: John McKendrick
Assistant Referee 1: Ralph Gordon Assistant Referee 2: Stephen Graham
Adults – £15
OAP’s/Under 16’s and students – £8
Parent & Child Gate – £18
Tickets are still available to watch the game from the hospitality suite. £20 for non season ticket holders and £10 for season ticket holders. Tickets must be purchased and picked up from the club shop prior to kick off.