Month: February 2017

Match Preview: Cumbernauld Colts – Stevens hopes pitch will suit Vale

A trip to one of the Lowland League’s top sides could be seen as a daunting one, but Jason Stevens insists that a pitch that suits Vale and confidence from the last result could be key if they are to get a result at Cumbernauld Colts.

The 3-1 victory over Preston last Saturday ended a dismal run of results and the hope is that the win will lift spirits and help the team to kick on.

Stevens said: “As much as Cumbernauld away is a tough game, the big artificial pitch will suit us and that should give us the confidence to take the game to them and hopefully win the game.

That result against Preston averted a mini-crisis which had seen Vale slide towards the bottom of the table. If it hadn’t been reversed then they could have been dragged into a relegation battle with the Panners and Selkirk. Now they will look be looking up and hoping to catch a clutch of teams who are reachable. In contrast, Cumbernauld Colts have lost their last two matches but have generally performed well this season, sitting sixth.

When asked if Saturday’s win can act as a springboard for the rest of the campaign, Stevens added: “Yeah, we have a tough couple of games coming up against Cumbernauld and Spartans so I think we need to stick together and perform well and try to climb up the league to where we were at the start of the season.”

Manager Chris Anderson added: “It was important to get the win last week, our first in eight games.

“We can go up to Cumbernauld with confidence and we’re looking forward to playing on a 3G pitch.”

Striker Keith McLeod comes back into contention after serving a two match suspension, but captain James Elliot is still out with an injury.


Cumbernauld – WDWLL

Vale – LLLLW

Previous meetings this season:

Vale 1-2 Cumbernauld Colts 27/08/16 Lowland League



Match Reaction – More to come from brace hero Stevens

Jason Stevens warned that there is more to come from both him and his Vale team-mates after he made a scoring return in the 3-1 win over Preston.

It was the side’s first match since January 7 thanks to a combination of bad weather and fixture scheduling, and before that they had gone eight matches without winning. Stevens had been missing due to injury and this was his first appearance since the defeat to East Stirling on December 18.

The midfielder, who can also operate up front, insists that despite notching a brace he is not at peak match fitness yet. He also hopes that the team can use the positive result as a springboard for the rest of the campaign.

He said: “I’m happy to be back playing. Saturday was my first game back since before Christmas and it is always good to score a goal or two. I think I need a few more games before I’ll be fully match fit.

“Saturday was a very important win. It was important for the team to get a bit of confidence back after a few disappointing results.”

The next two matches pitch Vale up against two of the league’s top sides in Cumbernauld Colts and Spartans, before the season comes to a close with a run of seven fixtures against teams who are all close by in the table.They will be looking to pick up as many points as possible to haul themselves back into contention for a top half finish.

“We have a tough couple of games coming up against Cumbernauld and Spartans so I think we need to stick together and perform well and try to climb the league to where we were at the start of the season”, added Stevens.

Photo: (Helen Barrington, Peeblesshire News)

Match Preview: Preston Athletic

The Lowland League’s bottom side Preston Athletic are the visitors to Victoria Park tomorrow, and Chris Anderson knows his side will be a target given they are only three positions further up the table.

Neither side goes in to the match in enviable form; Preston haven’t won since two on the bounce in December and while Vale have not played since January 7, prior to that they had gone eight without a win.

“The match against Gala seems a distant memory now and I speak for all the players when I say I can’t wait for the game to start.

“That said we know the importance of how we prepare each week and Preston will see us as a game they can compete in given our league position. Our main objective is as always to play on the front foot and attack with purpose. Let’s hope we can make for an exciting game”, said Anderson.

Vale will have Keith McLeod suspended after his red card against Gala, but Ali Smith is in line to make his long-awaited debut having suffered from illness since joining on loan from Hibs.

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Jack was a Diamond geezer for Ando

Chris Anderson has paid tribute to his outgoing Chairman Jack Diamond.

Diamond has had to step down due to work commitments, passing control over to his vice Stuart Robertson.

Anderson was entrusted with the manager’s position at a young age, for which he is thankful.

He said: “I would like to take the opportunity to thank Jack Diamond. Alongside Mark Lamb and his fellow committee members they saved the club from extinction and ensured the club met vital deadlines to stay in the league.

“I’m pleased Jack will stay on the board and play a vital role going forward and I will be forever grateful to him for having the courage to appoint a young enthusiastic coach to his first managerial post. He now passes on his chairmanship with the club in a far healthier position than ever before.”
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Chairman Update – Jack Diamond steps aside, replaced by Stuart Robertson

Jack Diamond has stepped down as Vale of Leithen Chairman and been replaced by Vice-Chairman Stuart Robertson.

Diamond has been forced to relinquish his position due to increasing work commitments, and will remain on the committee. He steered the club through troubled times and helped ensure that they remained healthy and able to remain competitive in the Lowland League.

At a club meeting Robertson was asked to take over and duly accepted.

After taking on the role, Robertson said: “A big thank you to Jack for his hard work over the last few years.

“As Vice-Chairman I was asked to take over the position of Chairman which I was pleased to accept. It’s a huge honour as a former player and manager and I am determined to work alongside the rest of the committee and ensure the club move from strength to strength.”


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