STRIVING & SURVIVING
Derby result could have big say in relegation fight and player futures
Airdrieonians defender Sean McIntosh hopes for a chance to impress on derby day in a bid to earn a new Diamonds deal.
The 21-year-old, who has also featured in midfield for the New Broomfield outfit this term, will be out of contract in May.
He has been in and out of the starting eleven this term – having been an ever-present under former gaffer Mark Wilson in a run to the promotion play-off places last season.
However, McIntosh is keen to earn a new contract with a good end to the season and is hoping for a run- out against Albion Rovers on Saturday.
“For me personally it’s been a frustrating season - I’ve not played as many games as I would have liked,” he told the Advertiser. “When compared with last season, I got a lot more game time in a successful season.
“The gaffer has been very upfront and honest with me but I went through a spell before the Queen’s Park game where I didn’t play five or six games.
“It’s probably the longest spell I have been out of the team since playing my first game.
“I’m still a young player and have played a lot of games and would really like to stay at the club.
“There has been a lot happening at the club but it’s a great bunch of boys and I told the gaffer I want to stay here.”
McIntosh has positive memories of the Monklands derby – having netted a lastgasp winner in the 4-3 clash at Cliftonhill last season.
He is crossing his fingers that he will be drafted into the starting line-up and handed the chance to extend his two-year stint at the Excelsior.
He said: “I remember being a bit disappointed that I didn’t start the game when I scored but then when I came on and got the late goal it was a brilliant feeling.
“It’s probably been the highlight of my career so far.
“It’d be good to get a run in the team before the end of the season. I want to be able to show what I can bring before the end my contract – maybe another derby goal!” Albion Rovers defender Scott McLaughlin admits they must win the Monklands derby to keep the relegation battle alive.
The 34-year-old reckons only maximum points will do as the Coatbridge outfit look to hold on to their League One spot.
After a tough second half of the season, the left-back is still confident they can earn a result.
“We’re at the stage now where even a point isn’t good enough – they all have to be wins now,”he told the Advertiser.
“In the dressing room it’s strange; even though we are down there we feel like we have been playing well and there is a bit of confidence.
“We feel like we have never got the breaks after a good start.
“You can’t keep outscoring teams like we did at the start of the season, but with injuries we have had to keep chopping and changing the team – especially the defence.
“I don’t know how many games Alan Reid will have missed in his 11 seasons here – but this season he gets hit with a bad injury.
“It’s not an excuse but these things keep happening, especially in defence.
“So we know at this point of the season we have to put together some wins.”
McLaughlin, who has been everpresent in the Rovers backline this season, has experienced the highs and lows of derby day.
On the last visit to ML6, the veteran saw red as his side held on for a point – and he scored a last-minute equaliser at Cliftonhill in January.
The Coatbridge outfit are yet to win against their rivals this term and the former Diamond knows this has to change.
He said:“They are all big games just now but obviously with Airdrie being a derby it adds that bit extra.
“Last time we were at Airdrie I got the red card because I felt I had to stop the guy going through on goal. He went down awfully easy, though – but we managed to hold on with nine men.
“Then I got the last-minute goal, which was a good feeling. The crowd reaction that day was brilliant. It was sweet in a derby. We have been playing good stuff against them this season so now we need to get the three points.”
Deal me in Sean McIntosh hopes to earn a new contract
Focused Scott McLaughlin has already enjoyed some derby day success