It’s the magic of the Scottish Cup this Saturday as the Spiders make the short journey along the M8 to face Lowland League side Spartans in the second round. The sides have only met twice in the past and have a win apiece to their names, but Spiders fans will not need reminding of that defeat which came in this same competition in January 2006. As the club media team caught up with gaffer Mark Roberts on the eve of the clash, he was all too aware of the potential banana skin which lies ahead.
Roberts said: “The most important thing for us is that we do what we need to do to ensure we are in the hat for the next round, ultimately that’s all that matters in cup competitions. We know that it is a tricky tie but I’ll be sending out a team that I believe can win the game if they go about their business in the right manner.
“I’ve been in the game long enough to know that you only need one or two players to be off their games on days like this and you’re in trouble and the players know that as well. We know there will be a shock or two from tomorrow’s round of matches and it goes without saying we do not want to be that team. The players know that they need to go out there and perform from the start and look to win their individual battles and if they do that, I’m confident we’ll be in the hat for the next round.
“We won’t however take anything for granted. We’ve been playing relatively well lately but coming away without the results our play has merited at times. We know that a victory tomorrow would not only see us in the draw for the third round, but it would also give us a platform to build on when we return to league business next weekend.
“First thing’s first though, we want to be in the draw for the next round and we want to go as far as possible in this competition and we know that for that to happen, the onus is firmly on us to do the job tomorrow.
“We’ll have to make late calls on a couple of the boys who have niggling injuries from training this week but either way, I’ll be picking a starting 11 that I believe can get us through the tie.”
The opposition: Spartans earned their place in the second round after knocking out Deveronvale in round one. It took a replay to do so having drawn the first match 1-1 at Ainslie Park. Teenage substitute Nicky Reid scored a last-minute winner in the replay at Princess Royal Park on Saturday 30th September.
Head to head: Played 2; Queen’s Park 1; Draw 0; Spartans 1. Scored – Queen’s Park 4; Spartans 4.
Last matches: 05/10/2019 Queen’s Park 1-2 Annan Athletic; 12/10/2019 Spartans 2-3 Stirling University.
Recent form: Queen’s Park – DLDLLL; Spartans WWDWLL.
Match officials: Referee – Graham Grainger; Assistant Referees – Ross Nelson and Brent Falconer.
Admission: Adults £10 and Concessions £7.
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Supporters notes: Should a replay be necessary this would take place on Tuesday 29 October with 7.45pm kick off at Hampden. The draw for the Third Round will take place this Sunday evening, 20 October. The draw will be broadcast live on Sportscene, between 7.15pm and 8.30pm.
Next Match: 26/10/2019 v Elgin City at Borough Briggs. Kick off 3.00pm.