Leith set for Rovers’ return as Kelso consider the Lily

Prof Blaikie Hawick Royal Albert Manager Tom
Prof Blaikie Hawick Royal Albert Manager Tom

DUE to the recent wintry conditions that have brought about the cancellation of many games, plus the holiday break, the East of Scotland League footballing programme has been a non-event of late, writes John Slorance.

A return to action is set to take place on Saturday, though, with sides being more than keen to kick off the New Year.

In the First Division, Peebles Rovers take on high-flying Leith Athletic at Whitestone Park.

Rovers manager Stuart Robertson told TheSouthern: “It’s a hard start for us. Leith are a very good side and I fancy them to get promotion and win the league.

“They have already beaten us 6-0 this season – it was one-way traffic that day and we were simply never in the game.

“I will be looking for a big improvement this time.”

Elsewhere, Kelso United travel to tackle Easthouses Lily.

Tweedsiders boss Prof Blaikie said: “Like a good few other sides we haven’t played since the middle of November.

“And, like a good few other sides, particularly in the Borders, we haven’t been able to train due to not having indoor facilities. It has been a very frustrating time, but there is nothing you can do about it.

“We lost earlier in the season to Easthouses, at Kelso.

“Although the result flattered them a bit, I was quite impressed with them as they knocked the ball about well. We will have a tough task on our hands playing them on their own ground, that’s for sure.”

United’s Jamie Swailes is unavailable, although Steven Tait and Paul Dumma may be fit.

Looking ahead to his side’s home meeting with Edinburgh City in the Premier Division, Selkirk manager Paul Brownlee said: “We will be hoping to keep up the good run we were having before the bad weather came along.

It won’t be easy against Edinburgh City, however.

City are not having the best of seasons in the league. They have not lost a lot of games, but have had a few draws. I believe they are a young side, and are pretty decent.

“Our squad has been strengthened by the signing of Jamie Gibson, who used to be with Gala Fairydean. Jamie has a lot of pace, and puts himself around on the park, and I think he will be a real asset.”

Selkirk have a doubt about Ryan McManus, who may be working.

Also involved in top flight action are Vale of Leithen who play host to Lothian Thistle at Victoria Park.

Gala Fairydean and Hawick Royal Albert are both without games.