FOLLOWING on from last weekend’s win over Buckie Thistle, which arrested a four-game losing streak, Nairn County go into another tough encounter as they make the away trip to face derby rivals Clachnacuddin.
The Lilywhites can boast an impressive recent record in home clashes with their neighbours with wins in the Highland League Cup quarter finals two seasons ago and two league victories the only times the Merkinch club has lost home derbies since County thumped they 6-0 during Ronnie Sharp’s first spell in charge. Nairn will look to put a stop to that in this latest instalment of what is usually a blood-and-thunder derby encounter.
The Lilywhites are on a positive run of form having defeated Fort William, held league champions Buckie Thistle and ground out three points with 10 men away at Lossiemouth in their last outing. Iain Polworth’s men have suffered costly goalkeeper woes this season but that appears to be behind them now and with a settled side to pick from again, the Grant Street gaffer will be targeting the three points that will take them above their opponents in the league table.
You can follow live updates from the match on the official Nairn County social media feeds. Simply logon to facebook.com/nairncountyfc or @NairnCounty on Twitter to keep up-to-date with all of the action as it happens. A preview of the match is below:
Date: Saturday December 2nd 2017
Competition: Scottish Highland Football League
Manager: Iain Polworth
Venue: Grant Street Park, Inverness
Previous meeting: Nairn County 1 Clachnacuddin 1 August 12th 2017
Last time out: Lossiemouth 2 Clachnacuddin 3; Nairn County 4 Buckie Thistle 1
League position: Clachnacuddin 13th Nairn County 11th
Form guides: Clachnacuddin LLLWDW Nairn County WLLLLW
Team news: Inaki Fernandino Soto signed on the dotted line at Station Park this week after three appearances as a trialist and he is set to make his official debut in this derby match. Ryan MacDonald missed last weekend’s win over Buckie Thistle and he is ready to return to the squad but Liam MacDonald sustained minor ankle ligament and tissue damage will therefore not be available selection. Callum Maclean continues to work his way back towards full fitness after three months out with a hamstring injury. Ewen Urquhart is still unavailable while Gregg Main is out long-term through a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament.
One to watch: Blair Lawrie. One of the most experienced members of the Clach squad and he is again enjoying a fine season having been deployed in a more advanced role by Iain Polworth. Makes a fine foil for Daniel Maclennan’s powerful presence with his pace and skill as he looks to jink past defenders and pick his spot beyond the goalkeeper or that crucial pass that will unlock the Nairn backline to provide scoring opportunities for team mates.
Match officials: Referee Alan Proctor, Assistants Barry Stuart and Gary McCarthy.
Weather forecast: Light cloud 9 degrees 11 mph wind.
Admission prices: Adults £8 Concessions £5 (two children under the age of 14 are admitted for free if they are accompanied by a paying adult).