Lo­cos set to un­leash Duff

Princess Royal Park: For­mer Don for In­verurie de­but against Deveron­vale

The Press and Journal (Inverness, Highlands, and Islands) - - Sport - BY DAVE ED­WARDS

In­verurie Lo­cos man­ager Neil Cooper will hand new sign­ing Stu­art Duff his de­but in to­day’s Press and Jour­nal High­land League match against Deveron­vale at Banff.

For­mer Aberdeen, Ca­ley Thistle­andDun­deeUnited mid­fielder Duff joined Lo­cos on an 18month deal on Wed­nes­day and Cooper is look­ing for an­other good per­for­mance from his side fol­low­ing the 2-2 draw against Brora Rangers last week­end.

Cooper said: “Stu­art will start at Deveron­vale.

“We will pre­pare the team the same as we did last week for the Brora game and there’s no dif­fer­ence be­tween fac­ing a side near the top or the bot­tom of the ta­ble. There are no guar­an­tees. You have to make sure that you put in a good per­for­mance and, hope­fully, on the day it is bet­ter than that of your op­po­nents. You can win games when you’re not play­ing so well, with a wee bit of luck. But equally, you can also lose games when you’ve played well.

“Hope­fully, the play­ers will give me the same good per­for­mance they gave me last week­end against Brora.”

Vale are ex­pected to hand a de­but to 18-year-old left-sided util­ity play­erKyle Wil­lox, whois on loan from Mon­trose un­til the end of the sea­son.

Nairn County man­ager Ron­nie Sharp in­sists he will not be un­der­es­ti­mat­ing bot­tom club Fort Wil­liam at Sta­tionPark­wherethe two sides meet to­day.

Sharp said: “We found it very tricky down there ear­lier in the sea­son when we only beat them 2-1 and they have im­proved since then sowe­knowit will be a tough game.

“We didn’t take our chances last week but that’s been the story of our sea­son so far.

“I ex­pectwe will cre­ate chances against them but we have to start tuck­ing them away.”

County are with­out cen­tral de­fender Wil­lie Bar­ron, who is un­avail­able due to work com­mit­ments.

Fort Wil­liam man­ager Ally Ewen has a fully-fit squad at his dis­posal.

De­fender Richard Tawse and at­tacker Iain MacLel­lan re­turn for Fort.

The game be­tween Rothes and For­mar­tine United was post­poned yes­ter­day, with Mackes­sack Park un­der a blan­ket of snow.

The derby be­tween Brora Rangers and Wick Academy was also post­poned last night, with Dud­geon Park deemed un­playable.

Pho­to­graph: Kevin Em­slie

FULL STEAM AHEAD: Neil Cooper is look­ing for more of the same from Lo­cos fol­low­ing a good show against Brora. Early morn­ing in­spec­tions are the or­der of the day at most High­land League grounds this morn­ing but one place where there should not be any prob­lems is Bell­slea, where Fraser­burgh en­ter­tain Huntly. Broch man­ager Mark Cowie said: “We have won our last two games but so have Huntly, so I guess I could say we are two of the in-form teams. “We hope to make it three wins in a row but we are ex­pect­ing a very tough game.” New Huntly co­man­agers, Andy Rod­die and Tommy Wil­son, are ex­pected to keep faith in the men who thumped Deveron­vale 5-2 last week­end. League lead­ers Buckie This­tle, mean­while, will have to be at their best to get the bet­ter of Lossiemouth at Vic­to­ria Park. Jags man­ager Graeme Ste­wart said: “Games against Char­lie Charlesworth’s sides are al­ways tough as they will be well or­gan­ised and work very hard for each other.” Lossie wel­come back mid­field trio Martin McMul­lan, Ryan Far­quhar and An­drew Ste­wart. The Cove Rangers v Clach match was called off yes­ter­day with the pitch at Har­law Park, In­verurie, frozen. For­res Me­chan­ics are still with­out full back Gra­ham Fraser, mid­fielder Kyle Scott and for­ward Fraser Forbes for the Mos­set Park derby against Strath­spey This­tle.

New start: Vet­eran mid­fielder Stu­art Duff will play at Banff

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