25th November 2016
Iain Russell is hoping Airdrie can carry their league form into the Scottish Cup, starting with a third round tie against his former club Livingston.
Striker Russell, who turned 34 last week, is hoping to celebrate by firing the Diamonds into the fourth round at New Broomfield on Saturday.
And the club's leading goalscorer says the Scottish Cup always provides a special occasion.
"The cup is a nice wee change for everyone, with the TV cameras there and hopefully a good crowd.
"It would be nice to get a wee run in the cup and keeping our winning form going."
That winning form has seen Airdrie pick up five league victories on the trot, the most recent being last weekend's 2-1 win over Alloa Athletic.
Former Livingston player Russell is hopeful that the break for cup action won't prove a distraction from the side's charge up the league.
"Time will tell if it's a good time to have the cup fixture.
"Obviously it's against one of our biggest rivals for the league, so if we can win again it keeps that run going ahead of our league fixture at Livingston."
With Livi sitting at the top of the table, and Airdrie the form team in the league, Saturday's tie should be a classic. Shouldn't it?
"It should be... it has all the makings of a cracking game - so it'll probably be nil-nil!
"When we played them in the league they turned us over 4-2, but we didn't feel there was too much in the game that day. We've clearly improved since then and we're starting to show consistency as well.
"Livingston have the biggest squad and the biggest budget in the league, so this will be a good measure for us to see how far we've come in the last couple of months since we played them.
"The way the boys are playing, we've got to be confident. Obviously losing Fitzy is a massive blow, but it gives us an extra incentive on Saturday.
"We want to go out there and do it for him."
Head Coach Mark Wilson confirmed that, with the exception of Fitzpatrick, he has a full squad to choose from.
He added "Livingston came here in the league early in the season and won so we certainly know what they’re capable of, but we’ll be prepared and we’ve been working hard all week towards this match."
David Hopkin's side come to New Broomfield looking to get back to winning ways after defeats against Peterhead and Welsh outfit TNS. Former Airdrieonians Liam Buchanan, Nicky Cadden, Sean Crighton, Alan Lithgow and Liam Watt will all be hoping to feature for the Lions.
Barry Cook is in charge of his second Airdrie cup tie of the season, having previously refereed the Irn Bru cup tie against Ayr United - and shown Russell an extra-time red card.