Gala Fairydean Rovers 2-0 Bathgate Thistle: Gala boss Martin Scott demands more from his players despite win

Gala Fairydean Rovers boss Martin Scott is demanding more from his players despite watching them book a home fourth-round East of Scotland Qualifying Cup tie with Bonnyrigg Rose by beating Bathgate Thistle 2-0 at Netherdale on Saturday.

By Craig Goldthorp
Wednesday, 9th February 2022, 11:19 am
Gala Fairydean Rovers beating Bathgate Thistle 2-0 on Saturday (Photo: Bill McBurnie)
Gala Fairydean Rovers beating Bathgate Thistle 2-0 on Saturday (Photo: Bill McBurnie)

Goals from Ciaren Chalmers – who played his first 90 minutes in a long time after injury – and Phil Addison, did the damage for Rovers and made it back-to-back victories.

“There were some aspects in the game I was happy with,” Scott said. “In terms of the objectives were to get through the round, we got a clean sheet and we scored two goals which was very pleasing.

"Ciaren has been outstanding for the past three or four weeks and I did mention to him: ‘Look, you’ve been outstanding playing middle of the park. It’s a bit different in terms of playing a two in there so you have to time your runs and the goals will come’.

On-loan Hearts striker Ryan Schiavone on the ball for Gala Fairydean Rovers at the weekend (Photo: Bill McBurnie)

"He got that goal so I was very pleased for him. Phil took his goal really well. It was a diagonal pass into him, he’s just got it out of his feet and converted it really sharply which was very good.

"In terms of performance, I’m still demanding more from the players and they know that.

“But I’m happy to keep building on that momentum. Bonnyrigg in the fourth round is another tasty encounter to look forward to. It will be a tough game obviously.”

Scott stressed that Rovers had felt comfortable in the game but gave Bathgate – currently bottom of East of Scotland League 1st Division Conference X – some praise too.

Gala Fairydean Rovers manager Martin Scott watching Saturday's match with his assistant, Steven Craig (Photo: Bill McBurnie)

"Credit to Bathgate they did try and play,” he added. “I spoke to their manager after the game and he was very pleased with their performance but also very complimentary of our guys in terms of the standard of player we have and the way we try to play the game.

"For a neutral it was a decent game in terms of the weather conditions were tough but both teams tried to have a go which was great. That’s what you want to see in a cup competition.

"But I think our overall quality and maybe fitness levels came out on top in the end.”

Rovers, 10th with 34 points from 24 games, resume their Lowland League campaign at home to third bottom Cumbernauld Colts this Saturday with kick-off at 3pm.

Scott said: “I feel we’re getting a bit of momentum and that breeds confidence. But every game in the Lowland League’s tough, especially at this time of the season.

"We played Cumbernauld away from home and it was a difficult game. Although we won 3-2 eventually it was a very exciting game, very end to end and they’ve got some very good players at this level."

Scott said he was pretty happy with the squad at his disposal, adding that he likely wouldn’t add any new players until the summer.

And good news came out of the club this week when it emerged that crocked defender Ben Herdman – out since sustaining a serious knee injury just five minutes into the new season – had undergone an operation as he begins his road to recovery. He is expected to be back by next Christmas.

With National Health Service waiting lists even longer than usual due to a Covid-19 backlog, team-mates of the 24-year-old and well-wishers had been trying to raise £8,000 so Herdman could get a private operation on his torn anterior cruciate ligament and medial meniscus done in a matter of months rather than years.