March 29, 2021
Cove Rangers vs Airdrieonians
Paul Paton says a top four finish is a must for Airdrie as the Diamonds look to bounce back from successive defeats.
Midfielder Paton made an assured debut against his old team Partick Thistle on Saturday, having joined on loan from East Kilbride earlier in the week. The result was far from ideal as Ian McCall’s side ran out 4-2 winners, but Paton has enjoyed his first few days in the Diamond.
“I’ve settled in well, the boys have been great with me and made me feel really welcome.
“Sean had texted me before I joined up with the squad, which I thought was a nice touch from the skip.”
Paton showed his experience with a tidy debut performance, driving play forward from the centre of midfield, but the Northern Ireland international says there is more to come.
“I’ve only had two training sessions and one game in nearly four months, so I’m looking to get fitter and prove my worth on the pitch.
“It was great to get back on the pitch, and although the final result wasn’t what we wanted, there were some positives to take forward as a group.”
“We need to make sure we are in the play-offs and then anything is possible.
With League One matches coming thick and fast following the campaign’s restart, Airdrie now face a Tuesday night trip to Cove Rangers.
The sides met at the Penny Cars Stadium in November, with a Thomas Robert wonder-goal earning the Diamonds a point after Jamie Masson had put the visitors ahead.
The Toonsers currently occupy second place in the League One table, with Airdrie’s weekend defeat seeing them slip to seventh - but Paul is aware of how tight the table is and can’t wait for an early chance to make up for Saturday’s loss.
“From what the boys have told me, Cove are the best footballing side in the division.
“After working with their manager and assistant, that doesn’t surprise me. It will be a tough game, but it’s one we’re very much looking forward to.”
Diamonds boss Ian Murray agrees that Tuesday’s opponents have caught the eye this season.
“Cove have consistently shown that they’re a really good side, so we know it will be another difficult game - but we’ve matched them before so we know we’re capable of going there and getting a result.”
The Diamonds are without suspended pair Kyle Turner and Sean Crighton, with Eoghan Stokes also sidelined by injury, but otherwise hope to have a fully fit squad to choose from.
Referee Peter Stuart is the man in charge of the 7:45pm kick-off.
You can watch the match live on Cove Rangers’ CRFC TV service using the link below.