Player unease adds to Netherdale turmoil

THINGS aren’t getting any easier down Netherdale way, writes Fiona Scott.

Following the departure of their manager the previous week, the club have been interviewing for a replacement, but further disquiet among the players is causing concerns in the committee room.

During the second half of last week’s game, which Gala lost 4-2 to Kelso United, centre back Darren Bowie tore off his shirt and walked off the pitch, while interim manager Ger Rossi declared he would be rethinking his position (see report on page 28).

This week, the focus has been on finding a new manager, something which chairman Jos Ritchie admits cannot be hurried.

“It’s never easy for the players when there is no-one to steady the ship, but whoever takes over must be the right person to drive the club forward,” he told TheSouthern.

“We have had three interviews already this week and have another one to come, so we are pretty hopeful of being able to fill the position in the not-too-distant future.

“In the meantime I would ask everyone to be patient.”

When asked about the situation with Bowie, Ritchie replied: “He will not play for Gala Fairydean again.”

This weekend Gala Fairydean tackle Ormiston at Recreation Park.

As far as results are concerned, Selkirk also have been having a lean time of it and are still hovering at the bottom end of the First Division table.

Despite this, however, there is little sign of despondency in the Souters’ camp and Selkirk defender Jason Inglis told TheSouthern: “There are 14 games left and the squad is now back to full strength for the first time for a while. Morale is high and I am confident that we will turn things around in the next few weeks.”

Selkirk are away to Eyemouth United on Saturday.

Peebles Rovers, who have risen from bottom place to a respectable league position in a matter of weeks, tackle Leith Athletic at home.

Talking of his side’s chances in this one, Rovers boss Jason Girdwood said: “We will be massive outsiders, but we are in almost every game and it doesn’t bother us.

“I would like to think we could compete with Leith, though, and who knows what might happen?”

Hawick Royal Albert travel to face Easthouses Lily. Struggling Albert – who have yet to win an East of Scotland league match at home this season and have fielded more than 40 players during the term – are minus the suspended Ronald Fleming, while skipper Kyle McCulloch has quit the club.

Kelso United entertain Burntisland Shipyard at Woodside Park.

Supporters of Vale of Leithen could be forgiven for thinking their team were filming an episode of Casualty over the last couple of weeks, such is the extent of their injury list.

Last Saturday, they postponed their away match with Gretna 2008 due to nine players being missing due to a variety of reasons, mostly medical. This week, the Innerleithen outfit host Tynecastle at Victoria Park, determined to get a team out.

Four of the nine will be back, while Vale are looking to have a couple of players on loan. Bad weather may cause the match to be switched to Fernieside. Details will be on the Vale website after 9am on Saturday morning.