Reserve Team Regular
- Dec 7, 2019
Leicester City, St Albans City
Fair to say Dalbeattie Star have improved somewhat on previous seasons efforts. Three wins out of three to start the season with.
You have to apply to your local council to get more.Is there still a restriction on crowds allowed to attend across lower league football? I've only read of Aberdeen, Celtic and Rangers applying for larger numbers of spectators over the last 7 days or so.
I saw EK last midweek and Caledonian Braves were every bit as good as them.Biggest surprise of the season so far is the poor start made by East Kilbride. They were expected to be amongst the pace setters but their team of "experienced" (i.e. elderly) stars has struggled so far. Perhaps Stevie Aitken is not the managerial messiah they thought he would be.
Dalbeattie have made a fine start - there win over Bo'ness being especially meritorious. If they can get a result at Berwick next week then they will have proved their credentials.
Come the end of the season the three Bs, Bonnyrigg, Bo'ness and Berwick will be the likeliest "best of the rest" behind Rangers B who I would expect to win the League. Spartans will be there or thereabouts as well.
Vale and Edinburgh Uni look to be well out of their depth again this season.
Would be a major shock but i don't think they will last the pace could be wrong though!Would Dalbeattie winning the LL be a bigger shock than Leicester winning the Prem,, given their record over the last 3 seasons? (Not that I'm expecting them to - indeed most of their people sounded fairly pessimistic when I went there on the opening day - but surely they should be hoping for at least top half now).
Perhaps the LL is a little weaker this term as Kelty have left without replacement and there have been issues at BSC/Broomhill?
Agree with what you say about Gala real potential for an SPFL side there reasonable size town with a decent population around it.Most teams in the Lowland League have now played six games. Shock leaders are Civil Service Strollers, ahead on goal difference from another surprise packet in the shape of Dalbeattie Star.
Strollers Manager Garry Jardine has previous for winning the Lowland League. He was in charge of Edinburgh City when they won the League and then the Play Off for an SPFL spot. Like most of his team and the dedicated officials who had overseen the rise of the club, he was unceremoniously dumped as a new Board of Directors took over. Strollers best result so far has been an away win against Rangers B – the only defeat suffered by the Ibrox Colts so far this season. Dalbeattie have yet to play either Celtic or Rangers B. Neither club looks to have the strength in depth to last the season at the top of the League but both will be delighted to have made such a good start.
No surprise to find Vale of Leithen at the other end of the table. The Borders side have dodged relegation in each of the last two season’s due to COVID. They have no points from six games and their Manager Chris Anderson walked after their 6th straight defeat. His replacement is Alex Munro, the club’s goalkeeping coach. Two clubs are on just two points. East Kilbride have played two games less than everyone else due to the SPFL league Cup commitments. Still, 2 points from 4 games is not the start they were looking for and their Manager Stevie Aitken has also “left by mutual agreement”. Kilby’s policy of signing veteran players has not paid off in previous years and shows no sign of doing so this time round. The other team on two points are Edinburgh University – an energetic but very youthful and inexperienced side. They should have enough about them to finish above Vale of Leithen but anything else would be surprising.
Bonnyrigg Rose and Spartans are tucked in behind the top two and one of them may will hit the top over the next couple of weeks. Rose lost a couple of their more experienced players during the Summer but their results have not suffered. Spartans added more quality to their side after a few seasons of comparative mediocrity. The arrival of Blair Henderson from Edinburgh City will improve their goal threat and he already has a healthy total.
Fifth and sixth are the B teams of Rangers and Celtic who have played just 5 games. Managers David McCallum and Tommy McIntyre are both delighted with their progress so far and with the level of competition they have been up against. Mind you, neither have played Edinburgh Uni or Vale yet. The argument that letting them in was all about improving young players for the long term good of Scottish football looks a trifle faux at present given that both are fielding plenty of non-Scottish players.
East Stirlingshire and Berwick Rangers will be disappointed with their starts. Berwick, with former Forfar and Kilby boss Stuart Malcolm at the helm, looked to have recruited well in the Summer. They have been struggling away from home and need to convert home consistency into results on the road. Shire’s magic money tree has withered and died so a mid table position is perhaps the best they could expect although their ever-optimistic fans had hoped for better. Gala Fairydean Rovers had a good whom win against Berwick but they have lacked consistency. If one club underachieves it is Gala – given the population and potential support they have things should be much better. Club rugby in the Borders is in serious decline and Fairydean need to up their game and realise their potential.
Bo’ness United also expected to make a better start. Regarded by many as possible Champions they have just seven points from six games. Their manager, Max Christie, is a bit of a Marmite figure and he has upset some by dispensing with long term favourites and bringing in a host of new players. Results must improve or he will be out of a job.
Caledonian Braves and Cumbernauld Colts cannot compete with the better sides in the League. Looking forward a few years they must be candidates for relegation. Compared to most of the clubs in the East and West of Scotland Premier Leagues they bring nothing to the table with minimal support and resources. The same is true of Broomhill FC, the semi-legitimate offspring of BSC Glasgow. The people running the Alloa-based “first team” of BSC had a fall-pout with the Glasgow-based parent club. It proved terminal and a new BSC Glasgow club now plays in the West of Scotland League. The Lowland League version, now called Broomhill, had to recruit a whole new team after their Manager left and toom most of the squad with him to Stenhousemuir. Their new boss is David Gormley from Rossvale – the funding and business model of Broomhill is a mystery to all.
That leaves Stirling University and Gretna. Stirling Uni have produced a conveyor belt of players for SPFL clubs over the last few years. In that sense they serve a purpose unlike some of the other clubs that seem line an old boys reunion for washed-up ex seniors. Stirling operate full-time sports scholarships and have picked up some very decent players and made them better. Gretna have played all their games away from Raydale as an artificial pitch goes down. Their squad looks little better than usual and they will do well to finish mid table.
Misses a third manager. Stephen Swift went to Stenhousemuir and saw out the 2020-21 season. He would go on to recruit a number of the established BSC Glasgow squad he had built. With the rest scattering to the winds.The Lowland League version, now called Broomhill, had to recruit a whole new team after their Manager left and toom most of the squad with him to Stenhousemuir. Their new boss is David Gormley from Rossvale – the funding and business model of Broomhill is a mystery to all.
It was a strange one that.Misses a third manager. Stephen Swift went to Stenhousemuir and saw out the 2020-21 season. He would go on to recruit a number of the established BSC Glasgow squad he had built. With the rest scattering to the winds.
Martin Hardie is appointed as his replacement. Never manages a game for BSC Glasgow or Broomhill. Leaves or gets pushed about a week before the season started.
David Gormley then comes to the rescue.
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