MORTON versus Edinburgh City
Saturday 29 July 2017
Cappielow Park, Greenock
Jim Duffy’s side host Edinburgh City tomorrow in what is both their second home match of the 2017/18 season and their final fixture of Betfred Cup Group F.
Last Saturday’s 4-0 loss at top seeds Motherwell means the Cappielow club face a tough task in making it out of the section and into the knockout phase of the competition.
To have any chance they must defeat League Two Edinburgh City, the SPFL’s newest addition following their promotion at the end of the 2015/16 campaign, at Cappielow and hope results elsewhere go in their favour.
They will have to achieve success minus a number of key players. Defenders Thomas O’Ware, Lee Kilday, Ricki Lamie and Darren Barr are all out, while Gary Oliver and Gary Harkins are also missing.
New signing Jack Iredale is in line to make his debut against the capital city outfit, and manager Duffy has asked his side to go out with a very positive mindset in order to claim maximum points.
Jim Duffy told gmfc.net: “This is the first time the clubs will play each other and it is always good to come up against new opponents.
“In their first season last year, I thought they did remarkably well. They were probably a little bit shell-shocked to start with, but after that they acquitted themselves admirably in the senior ranks.
“Today, from our point of view, even at this early stage we have been decimated by injuries to central defenders and we’ve had to shuffle things around a little bit.
“It’s not ideal; at any stage of the season you want to try and have all your players available to put the building bricks in for the campaign ahead.
“Unfortunately, we’ve had those injuries to Thomas O’Ware, Lee Kilday, and Ricki Lamie, and the only thing we can accept is that it is just unfortunate circumstances.
“It’s not muscle injuries, which sometimes you can pick up in pre-season and are avoidable. Ours were unavoidable injuries and have certainly stretched us in the defensive department.
“But taking the Motherwell game aside, which saw us go down to 10 men and up against a strong and powerful Premiership side, we have played pretty well in the other two games.
“Even though we had to come back from 2-0 down in the last few minutes against Queen’s Park, we still played well for the majority of the game.
“We want to finish this Betfred Cup section strongly, and the only way we can do that is by getting a positive result tomorrow.
“Getting out of the group is difficult because it’s not all about what you do. But what you have to do is go out and win the game and then see what happens at the end of the day.
“First and foremost, the match is going to be another test for us. Again, we’ll have players missing. Gary Harkins is suspended, and Gary Oliver is out as well as our defenders. So our resources are stretched to the maximum.
“However, as I’ve said many times, these players have a terrific attitude in the face of adversity and I expect us to rise to the challenge again today.”
Defenders Lee Kilday, Thomas O’Ware, and Ricki Lamie are all sidelined as is Gary Oliver (virus). Darren Barr is also a fresh doubt with an ankle injury, while Gary Harkins serves the first of a two-match suspension.
New signing Jack Iredale, though, is in line to make his Morton debut.
Ex-Morton development defender David Verlaque is currently on Edinburgh City’s books. The second generation Ton player spent the 2013/14 season at Cappielow and was an unused sub for the first-team on a handful of occasions.
The clubs have never met in competitive action.
Admission prices are:
Concessions (Over 65 and Under 16): £6
As per the Queen’s Park match, fans using the mainstand should buy a ticket at the new ticket office near the mainstand gate on Sinclair Street.
Fans who intend to stand on the terrace can, as an alternative to entering via the Wee Dublin End, purchase a ticket at the new ticket booth and enter via the new Sinclair Street turnstiles, which will be open for the first time.
Regarding the issue of 2017/18 season cards and fans cards, we expect to have an update on this in the early part of next week.
Fans intending to sit in the mainstand should buy a ticket at the new ticket office, which will be open from 1pm, on Sinclair Street.
To help facilitate the above we would ask that, where possible, fans have the correct change available and be as early as possible, which will speed up the issue of tickets.
Cowshed / Sinclair Street
Fans using the terrace can use the turnstiles at the Wee Dublin End, which will allow access to the Cowshed and the Sinclair Street terraces.
These will be cash turnstiles and we ask that, where possible, fans have the correct change available and turn up as early as possible to assist with speedy entry to the ground.
Alternatively, supporters can also purchase a ticket at the new ticket office, which will be open from 1pm, on Sinclair Street and enter via the new terrace turnstiles on Sinclair Street.
After the match, fans will exit as normal via the main gates onto Sinclair Street.
Edinburgh City supporters
Away fans will be accomodated within sections F and G of the mainstand, and will be required to purchase tickets at the new ticket office on Sinclair Street.
Image: David Bell