Preview: Airdrieonians vs Ayr United
April 5, 2018
Jake Hastie says Airdrie will have to be at their best against Ayr United on Saturday - but the midfielder firmly believes the Diamonds can take the points.
The Motherwell winger is approaching the end of his season-long loan at Excelsior Stadium, and has thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
"I've loved every minute of it, the boys have been great and I've enjoyed playing week in week out.
"I've been happy with some of my performances, but it's obviously been an up and down season for everyone."
Hastie put in an impressive performance at Hampden last weekend, but Queen's Park battled hard to earn a 0-0 draw.
"It was a frustrating game. I thought we played really well in the first half but in the second half we lost our way a wee bit and stopped moving the ball about.
"It was a game that had the potential to turn into a scrap, Queen's are fighting to avoid relegation so we knew they were going to be aggressive and press us at every opportunity."
From facing the side at the foot of the table, Hastie and his team-mates now turn their attention to league leaders Ayr United.
The 19-year-old is pleased with the Diamonds performances against Ian McCall's side so far this season.
"We've done really well against them, apart from the second half of the last game.
"I feel we can win the game on Saturday and we'll be going out fully confident that we can do that. If we get in their faces, apply the right pressure and move the ball well, we will create chances and hopefully we can take them."
With an enjoyable season at the Excelsior drawing to a close, Jake is open to a return in the future.
"I've got another year left on my contract at Motherwell. I'm aiming to go back for pre-season - hopefully flying - and see where it takes me.
"I could definitely see myself coming back to Airdrie at some point in the future - I've already spoken to Stevie about that.
"I'd love to come back, I've enjoyed every minute of it!"
Manager Stevie Findlay reiterated the need to step up the performance.
"If we play to our capabilities and work hard, and our quality on the ball is decent, we'll always give ourselves a chance.
"We've got to be positive and we've got to be forward-thinking. We want to give the fans the opportunity to walk away from the game and be proud of the way the team played."
Findlay also confirmed that Darryl Duffy and Dan Higgins will definitely miss out for the Diamonds, while Willie Muir is rated "extremely doubtful".
Defender David Brownlie is back in training and will be given every chance to prove his fitness.
Referee Colin Steven awarded Airdrie an early penalty in his only other match in charge of the Diamonds this season - but it was a day to forget for the travelling fans as Arbroath ran out 7-1 winners.