Friday 23rd August 2019

DUMBARTON are back at home tomorrow, facing Stranraer at the C&G Systems Stadium on matchday four of this season’s League One.

After last week’s dramatic 3-2 win at Peterhead, spirits have remained high in training this week and there is hope of posting a second straight victory.

The Blues are still the last team to lose to Dumbarton at the C&G Systems Stadium when they did so by a 2-1 scoreline in Sons’ final home outing of last season.

But after Stranraer secured a fantastic result of their own last week, beating Raith Rovers 3-2, Dumbarton boss Jim Duffy is aware of the challenge ahead.

He said: “We needed last week’s result at Balmoor, and I was delighted to get it. You could see at full time just what it meant to the players and the fans who travelled.

“You could also see it in training this week. The players returned on Tuesday still buzzing from the result and the way we earned it, and that night and Thursday we had two really useful sessions.

“But Stranraer will be feeling exactly the same way about their result at home to Raith Rovers. Like ourselves, they dug in hard in the later stages of the game to claim all three points.

“Last week is now done and we have to focus on the challenge we face tomorrow. With it being our return to our own stadium, we have to look to make home advantage count.”

The gaffer is hopeful of having skipper Stuart Carswell available tomorrow after he missed the Peterhead game, while checks will also take place on Matthew Shiels.

If Carswell does play, it will be his 100th game for the club, making him the first player to reach the milestone since Garry Fleming in April 2015.

No further doubts are reported from the squad that recorded the first victory of the season last week. Stefan McCluskey should also be available after missing the trip to Balmoor.

Barry Cook is the referee for tomorrow’s game, assisted by David McGeachie and Chris Hughes.

Mr Cook was also in charge of the sides’ first meeting last season at Stair Park. Stranraer won that game 3-2 but given that PJ Crossan scored the winner that day, Sons are hopeful that history doesn’t avoid repeating itself altogether.

Entry for all fans tomorrow is via the east turnstiles (the ones closest to Castle Road) and access to Bar 72 before the match is available for all.

Issue five of Sons View, the club’s award-winning matchday programme, will be on sale priced £2.50.

Andy Galloway

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