Livingstone hit by injury after keeper collision

JUST months after rejoining the East of Scotland set-up, the playing future of injury-ravaged Gala Fairydean striker Craig Livingstone is once again in the balance.

The Gordon fencer returned to the EoS mix at the start of the season having recovered from knee cartilage problems which have hampered his playing career since leaving Selkirk FC in 2008. But, following a collision with the Preston Athletic keeper during last Saturday’s King Cup victory, the injury has flared up yet again, leaving Livingstone and the team in doubt as to whether he will continue.

Fairydean manager Fraser Lothian told TheSouthern: “His knee is pretty swollen up at the moment, but he is going for a scan next Wednesday and we will know more after that.

“Craig is pretty gutted about the whole thing. It doesn’t just affect his football, it’s his work as well, and with the problem being a recurring one I think he is just having to think carefully about his future. Once he knows the extent of the problem he will be able to make that judgement.”

Gala are poised to play their first league game on their 3G pitch when taking on Peebles Rovers on Saturday and Lothian is looking for his troops to do the business again.

“It was a real team performance last week and if we can play to the same standard against Peebles we will get a win,” he added. Gala are also without the injured Craig McBride, but have Bruce Hunter back.

Rovers manager Stuart Robertson said: “We have already played Gala this season and there was nothing between the two sides and I am expecting it to be the same in this one.”

Peebles are minus the suspended Ron Fleming and could field a trialist centre half.

Hawick Royal Albert and Kelso United are set to lock horns again when they clash at Albert Park and Albert player manager Lawrie Dunn told us: “I am an ex-Kelso player and know the set-up well. They won’t be taking us lightly and will be up for the game. So will we be, though, as it’s a very important match for us.” Paul Tansey, Graham Clee, Paul McAllion, Paul Power and Danny Burns are all back in the Hawick squad.

United manager Prof Blaikie, a former Albert boss, said: “It’s never easy getting a result at Hawick and I am expecting a hard game.” Jamie Swailes is recovering well from a recent shoulder injury and could make the squad, while Sean Angus remains on the injured list.

In the Premier Division, Vale of Leithen tackle Gretna 2008 at Victoria Park while Selkirk are minus Lee Stephen for their King Cup first round battle with Coldstream at Home Park.