Friday 16th October 2020

IT is time for League One opening day – but not as we know it.

With public health guidance continuing to prohibit fans from attending games, Dumbarton will begin their league season away to Forfar Athletic behind closed doors tomorrow.

The game will of course be available for our supporters to stream live, and it is one manager Jim Duffy hopes can give a positive response to last week’s Betfred Cup defeat at Clyde.

Although the unprecedented circumstances of preparing for the season continue, the gaffer feels things have gone positively since last week.

Speaking to www.dumbartonfootballclub.com, he said: “Every manager is almost waiting on a phone call to say somebody is ill or has tested positive for Covid-19, as it is happening everywhere.

“But fortunately there have been no cases or anything like that among us. This is going to be the case for good few months and everybody will get their fair share, but thankfully we have not had anything like that this week.

“In football all you can do is learn from games, whether you win or lose, and try and work on aspects of the game.

“That’s all you can ask at any level. Ever since I came to the club the attitude has always been good and whenever we’ve had a disappointing result we’ve always had a good response in training the following week, and this week has been no different.”

The gaffer reports that PJ Crossan is 50/50 to make it tomorrow having struggled in the late stages of the Clyde game, while Stefan McCluskey’s dislocated shoulder keeps him out.

Rico Quitongo jarred his knee in training last night, but has a favourable chance of playing tomorrow.

Chris Hamilton is also suspended after being sent off against Clyde, but new signings Donald Morrison and Jaime Wilson are added to the squad.

In terms of additions to the squad, Jim added: “I don’t think there will be any more in time for tomorrow.

“Donald played a few games in pre-season and we felt he did well, but at the time we weren’t looking for signings in his area of the field.

“With the injuries we have picked up since, I felt it would be good to get him on board. He is adaptable, just started university in Glasgow last week and in the circumstances we felt we needed cover.

“He has a great attitude to the game and feels he can add something to the squad.

“We now have international clearance secured for Jaime and that gives us another option at the top end of the field.

“We will need everybody as we will be carrying a tight squad this season, and I don’t think we’ll be alone in that.”

PJ Crossan is pictured when the sides last met in March, but is 50/50 to play tomorrow. Copyright True Scott Photography 2020.

Please see our previous story for details of how you can book your live stream of tomorrow’s game.

If you can’t get to a computer, we’ll have live Twitter updates on our feed @dumbartonfc, and a full report will be here on the club website as soon as possible after the final whistle.

Forfar Athletic’s last five games

Tuesday, October 13, 2020 – Forfar Athletic 0 Hibernian 1
Saturday, March 7, 2020 – Raith Rovers 2 Forfar Athletic 1
Tuesday, March 3, 2020 – Dumbarton 2 Forfar Athletic 0
Saturday, February 29, 2020 – Forfar Athletic 0 East Fife 1
Tuesday, February 25, 2020 – Peterhead 1 Forfar Athletic 1

The last 10 meetings of the clubs

Tuesday, March 3, 2020 – Dumbarton 2 Forfar Athletic 0
Saturday, December 14, 2019 – Forfar Athletic 3 Dumbarton 4
Saturday, November 23, 2019 – Dumbarton 3 Forfar Athletic 1
Saturday, October 5, 2019 – Dumbarton 3 Forfar Athletic 1
Saturday, April 13, 2019 – Forfar Athletic 0 Dumbarton 0
Saturday, January 5, 2019 – Dumbarton 2 Forfar Athletic 3
Saturday, November 17, 2018 – Forfar Athletic 3 Dumbarton 0
Saturday, August 11, 2018 – Dumbarton 0 Forfar Athletic 2
Saturday, July 16, 2016 – Forfar Athletic 2 Dumbarton 2 (Forfar won on penalties)
Saturday, March 31, 2012 – Dumbarton 1 Forfar Athletic 0

Forfar’s last victory at home was on Saturday, February 1, when they beat Clyde 2-1. Dumbarton, however, are seeking their first away win in 2020.

Peter Stuart will referee tomorrow’s game, assisted by Graham McNeillie and Euan Birch.

Andy Galloway

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