Dunfermline Athletic

Manager on Thursday

Thursday, 3rd Jan 2019

03/01/19: AJ - “When you score so many goals and look a threat I’m sure that it will give the team loads of confidence.

Manager Allan Johnston is warning his players that many teams in the Championship have struggled to get results against Alloa Athletic this season. Only Ayr United and Ross County have 100% records against the team that emerged through the play offs from League One at the end of last season.

Inverness Caley Thistle have only managed draws against Jim Goodwin’s team and in the last two weeks Dundee United and Queen of the South and suffered defeats. The bookies have the Pars at odds of 4-9 to win but AJ told the media on Thursday:-

“We are not taking anything for granted. They have some good players, they are really well organised, they sit really deep and then they try and counter on you.

“They are dangerous opponents but we are at home, we have to be on the front foot and have to try and get the three points.

“When teams sit in the tempo is not as quick. They make it difficult and that is when we have to find that imagination in the box to find the final pass or make the breakthrough so that they have to commit and make it a more open game.”

The gaffer was still smiling about the 4-2 win at The Falkirk Stadium last Saturday:-

“We needed that, we needed a good performance and it gives us a massive lift going into the game. When you score so many goals and look a threat I’m sure that it will give the team loads of confidence.

“Coming back from going behind so early in the game to score four goals and we could have scored more. It was a really pleasing performance but we have said that a few times. We need to follow that up and find that consistency to do that week after week.”

After consistently failing to score in their previous three matches that ceased against Ray McKinnon’s men and Allan put that down to being more clinical when the chances have come along.

“That is something that we have struggled with this year. When we have had chances we have not taken them and got punished at the other end. Hopefully that is us on the up and with consistency we can start working our way up the table.”

The win was only the second this season in which Dunfermline have come back from a goal down in a league match to take the three points. AJ continued:-

“To get the first goal is massive in this league. Falkirk got it at the weekend but you could see the confidence come when we got that goal back. When you see guys like Tom (Beadling) scoring goals from midfield, it is something that we have probably lacked in recent games.”

Myles Hippolyte returned to the side and scored against his old club. His manager felt that the 24 year old has set himself a standard and he has to keep on achieving that.

“He has a lot of ability and like the other boys he has to play regularly at that level every week.” Of James Vincent’s goal, his boss joked:-

“I don’t know what he was doing that far up the pitch. It was a really composed finish.” Reminding everyone of his 86th minute Scottish Cup winning goal against Falkirk in 2015, the manager added “he was saying that was reminiscent of his Inverness days!”

On the availability front Allan confirmed that Andy Ryan is still out long term, Sean Murdoch is stepping up his rehab, on his way back slowly and Louis Longridge is still a couple of weeks away which means Aidan Connolly is back in training. Twenty year old striker Callum Smith has returned from a good spell on loan to Arbroath.

The manager confirmed that he is on the look out for players who can improve the team but had nothing to add.

Above: Callum Smith in action for Dunfermline Athletic

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