Jim Duffy eager for Livi game to get go ahead

Manager Jim Duffy is eager for the Tony Macaroni Arena to pass tomorrow morning’s pitch inspection in order for tomorrow’s Ladbrokes Championship fixture away at Livingston to go ahead as planned.

The West Lothian outfit have had their pitch covers down since last Saturday in order to combat the cold snap, but the SPFL have confirmed the playing surface will assessed at 9.30am before a final decision is made.

Duffy and his team have continued preparations as though there is no doubt about the game, and the Ton boss is keen for the contest to beat the weather.

Speaking to media and communications officer Jonathan Mitchell this afternoon, he said: “It’s always an awkward one because in the back of your mind you’re never quite sure if the game will be on.

“But there’s nothing you can do about it. At this time of the year it happens with the weather in Scotland in winter, and we’ve been in a cold spell for a couple of weeks now. It’s part and parcel.

“I spoke to Hoppy during the week to get a wee update and he said that at that moment in time the pitch was frozen, but that was in the middle of the week, so we’re just hoping the weather improves.

“So we’ll wait until we hear and deal with it accordingly. Of course we don’t want it to be off – you look forward to the game on a Saturday. Everybody does. That’s what you build up for. You want to be playing.

“If the game goes ahead we know we’re going to be up against an extremely difficult team to play against. They give everything and they’ve carried on their momentum from winning the title last year.

“Their confidence is high and that, in this division, they’re not going to go away. They’ve got a couple of games in hand and if they win those they’ll be right in the mix at the top of the league.

“So they’re a formidable side and we’ve got to make sure that we match them in all aspects. We’ve got to be a bit sharper on the ball and move the ball a bit quicker than we did in previous games against them.

“They’re a different type of opposition to Dundee United. I’ve watched that game again, and the performance over the 90 minutes was pretty good.

“We weren’t dominated out the game. United were better in most of the key areas and that was the difference between them winning.

“But I was delighted in terms of how we competed. We just didn’t anticipate things; we weren’t alert enough when the ball dropped in the box. We were always a split second behind.

“So I certainly wasn’t overly unhappy, but we still have to improve elements. We have to continue to be organised, we have to continue to compete – but we have to find that wee spark in the attacking third.”


Image: David Bell