Fifers on Lichties’ hit list after Ochilview disappointment

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ARBROATH player / manager Paul Sheerin will be hoping this weekend for a return to form for his side in their clash against East Fife tomorrow (Saturday).

The Lichties suffered an ignominious 2-0 defeat at the hands of Stenhousemuir at Ochilview Park last weekend, and are looking to put that behind them.

Mr Sheerin said: “Yes, I am hoping that we go back to our winning ways this weekend.”

He also hopes that he can build on the idea of a ‘Fortress Gayfield’ that he raised last week, and which could become very important to their campaign this season.

The Gaffer explained: “Winning home games stands you in good stead in the table, so we need to go back to the form we had against Albion Rovers.”

Arbroath rising star Lee Sibanda put in a solid performance in an otherwise mediocre showing according to the manager.

He said: “‘Sibbie’ has been one of our better players lately, and he stood out in a game that didn’t earn very many pass marks.

“He has been the victim of his own success really, and he’s played in a lot of different positions because he can.

“He’s suffered a wee bit for that.”

On Saturday Mr Sheerin will have to rethink his forward strategy if Arbroath are to make an impact on the scoreline.

He explained: “Swankie wasn’t quite up front by himself. He did have Sibanda and Falkingham offering him support, but it didn’t work out as well as I hoped.

“That’s why the shape went back to four-four-two.”

The Lichties will be at home to East Fife tomorrow (Saturday), who are coming from a strong win over Airdrie last weekend.

Mr Sheerin said: “East Fife are a tough one. They are one of the favourites for this season.

“Manager John Robertson has them well organised, they are playing good stuff, and he is clever.

“He’s won titles before at other clubs and he will be looking for a good result against us.”

Mr Sheerin is adamant that success in the league starts at Gayfield, commenting: “Home form is vital. If we can score a couple of points every couple of games then we will be able to keep running with the pack.”

And the Gayfield boss also revealed that he had been looking at a potential new recruit, adding: “We have a trialist in training with us just now.

“He’s been out of senior level football for a while now, but it’s no great mystery.”

He is believed to play wide right, but Mr Sheerin is reluctant to jinx a deal. He said: “I’ll be having a look over him the next couple of weeks.

“I’d rather not say who he is, just in case.”