Airdrieonians v Ayr United preview

28th February 2014

Gary Bollan says Airdrieonians are a "different animal" as they fight the dreaded drop from League One.

The Diamonds are three points adrift of safety, and four clear of rock-bottom Arbroath, after putting together a six-game unbeaten run.

Bollan's rejuvenated side hosts Ayr United on Saturday with plenty at stake for both teams.

And the manager is going for the win after Airdrie were denied a deserved victory in Tuesday night's 1-1 draw at home to Stenhousemuir. 

"I think we should have won the game," he said. "It should have been out of sight in terms of how much possession and how many chances we had.

"We didn't defend the corner well enough for their goal and it's disappointing coming in having only taken a point.

"But six or seven weeks ago we might have been happy with that. It just shows how things have been turned around.

"Our lads defended well for much of the 90 minutes. We kept the ball well in the middle of the park and the front two were a menace. They worked hard and pressed right up the pitch.

"We're hugely disappointed but there are lots of positives to build on. We're a completely different animal compared to a couple of months ago. The confidence has come back.

"You could see how disappointed the lads were in the dressing room to only pick up a point as they knew they had done enough to win the game. But the run goes on and we're unbeaten in six games."

The Diamonds have tightened things up at the back with Bollan insisting hard work on the training pitch is continuing to pay off.

"We're becoming a hard team to beat," he added. "Other sides are coming here and not scoring goals against us. They're finding it difficult to break us down."

Bollan has added to his squad with Craig Barr agreeing terms at New Broomfield to the end of the season.

The 26-year-old has previously won titles with Gretna and Livingston and worked with Bollan during their stint in West Lothian.

"Craig brings good quality," the manager acknowledged. "He's played at a high level in the SPL. I thought his performance on Tuesday was outstanding. He will get better and he's a great addition to our squad.

"We kept possession well against Stenhousemuir and that's maybe down to the experience and quality Craig has got. He wins second balls and headers and gets us up the pitch."

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