Last chance saloon for Toon play-off chase

Kevin Dzierzawski blocks an attempt by Jamie Longworth
Kevin Dzierzawski blocks an attempt by Jamie Longworth

Peterhead boss Jim McInally has said that this Saturday’s game with Dunfermline at Balmoor is now a must win fixture.

The Toon lost 2-1 at home against league leaders Stranraer on Saturday to narrow their chances of reaching the play-offs.

Peterhead currently sit five points behind Brechin, who occupy the final play-off spot in fourth place, with only five fixtures remaining.

McInally’s men will face Ayr (away), Forfar (home), Airdrieonians (home) and Morton (away) after the meeting with fellow play-off chasers Dunfermline this weekend.

The Peterhead boss has said the game is a must win for both sides.

“We need to beat Dunfermline if we want to still be in with a chance of making the play-offs but they also need to beat us for the same reason.

“It is still very tight around that spot in the league, Brechin have gone six games without a win now and Airdrieonians have become the team to beat.

“Whatever happens over the coming games, whether we make the play-offs or not, we’re going to have a say on who wins the league.”

Peterhead still need to face the other two title-challenging sides, Forfar and Morton, after defeat against Stranraer.

“We were very good in the first half against Stranraer,” said McInally.

“We dominated the team which are top of the table and realistically we have no right to dominate a side like that for 90 minutes.

“We came out for the second half and continued the dominance and should have scored, then they had a 15-20 minute spell where they controlled the match and scored.

“After they scored again we were putting pressure on and to be honest the could have scored a lot more in the last 7-8 minutes but that was only because we were going gung-ho to try and get something out of the game.”

Peterhead were without striker Rory McAllister who missed out with a back injury sustained against Brechin last Tuesday and were also missing the in-form Gary McDonald for most of the first half.

“Rory was feeling a lot better on Saturday so things are looking good there.

“Gary wasn’t meant to be available for the game. He didn’t finish work in Glasgow till 11.30am so it’s testament to him that he made it up at half three.”