Preview: Arbroath vs Airdrieonians
February 22, 2019
Sean McIntosh is pleased to be back in first-team contention for Airdrie, and wants the Diamonds to produce an unexpected result against league leaders Arbroath.
The midfielder was named in the starting line-up against Brechin City last weekend after a long spell on the sidelines, and the 22-year-old wants more opportunities as Airdrie fight to climb the table.
“It felt good to be back - it’s been very frustrating for me compared to the last couple of seasons, but I’m delighted to be back and hopefully I can push on now.”
McIntosh’s frustrations at watching on from the sidelines may have ended, but the result was a difficult one to swallow as the Diamonds slipped to a 1-0 defeat despite dominating the match.
“I think everybody could see we deserved more from the game. We created a lot of chances and had a goal wrongly disallowed for offside, but we conceded a sloppy goal and ultimately paid the price for it.
“Because they got the goal early, they just sat in and defended and I think anyone would find it difficult to play against that.
“At the end of the day we have to look at ourselves though - we’re not scoring enough and we have to sort that out as soon as possible."
The match was Airdrie’s sixth in succession without a win, but McIntosh saw enough to believe a turnaround is possible.
“We created enough chances to easily win the game, so looking ahead to Saturday we have to take encouragement from that.
“It’s an important match - they all are now - so we need to be positive.”
As important matches go, Airdrie couldn’t ask for a tougher task this weekend. Dick Campbell’s Arbroath have topped the League One table since the opening day, and are now 16 points clear at the summit.
Sean says a positive attitude can work for the Diamonds.
“It’s a tough place to go and Arbroath are in great form, they’re top of the league for a reason. They’ll be favourites, so we just have to go for it - it’s not as if we’ve been playing badly, we’ve just not been scoring enough
“I know it’s difficult for the fans when we’re not winning, and it’s difficult for us too, but we need to stick together and stay positive as a club to kick on and get out of this rut.”
Manager Ian Murray also wants to see more belief from his side.
“We’re facing the toughest fixture in the league at the moment, but there’s nothing to fear for us - I don’t think people will be expecting much from us but we go there believing we can win.
“Arbroath have done fantastically well to get where they are. To be 16 points clear at this stage of the season is a great achievement, but we gave them a great game down here last time so there’s no reason why we can’t go to Arbroath and repeat that performance.”
Kyle Wilkie returns to the squad after recovering from an ankle knock.
Referee Steven Kirkland’s only other Airdrie match this season was the 3-0 Scottish Cup win over Dumbarton in November.