THE final home game of the season at Station Park sees Formartine United visit as Nairn County look to recover from the weekend's cup final defeat by keeping control of their hopes of a top five finish by earning all three points against Kris Hunter's third-placed side. A full preview of the match is below:
Date: Wednesday April 13th 2015
Competition: Scottish Highland Football League
Kick-off: 8.00 pm
Opponents: Formartine United
Manager: Kris Hunter
Venue: Station Park, Nairn
Previous meeting: Formartine United 5 Nairn County 1 October 7th 2015
Last time out: Brora Rangers 0 Nairn County 0 AET (5-4 on pens); Formartine United 5 Clachnacuddin 1
League position: Nairn County 7th Formartine United 3rd
Form guides: Nairn County WLDWDD(L) Formartine United WWDWLW
Team news: Manager Les Fridge may freshen up his physically and mentally shattered side for this one following Highland League (Morganti) Cup heartache against Brora Rangers at the weekend. That could mean recalls for the likes of Tony Wallace, Michael Morrison, Paul Macleod, Ross Naismith and Kenny McKenzie as Nairn bring the curtain down on their home fixtures for this season. Meanwhile, Wayne Mackintosh will be desperate for as many minutes of football as possible in the remaining games of the campaign as he works his way back from a long term knee injury with the aim of being fully fit to participate in a full pre-season programme. Conor Gethins was risked from the bench in the cup final at the weekend and he is still working his way back to full fitness while Adam Naismith is a doubt having come off with a knock on Saturday. Work commitments rule Bradley Halsman out, Jordan Macrae and Martin MacDonald are sidelined by a broken arm and a knee injury respectively while Andrew Hardwick is on loan at Fort William.
One to watch: Neil Gauld. The lively striker has come alive during the run-in and almost single-handedly hauled Formartine United over the line in the Highland League title race. The former Inverurie Locos man has struggled for game time since making the high profile switch to North Lodge during the summer but after grabbed a number of crucial goals from the bench to keep Formartine on the coattails of the leaders, he was handed a starting place and repaid manager Kris Hunter with more strikes. Unfortunately for United, it does not look like being enough to take the title to Pitmedden with a 1-0 defeat to Cove Rangers last midweek meaning they can now only claim the championship on goal difference provided Cove lose their final two fixtures but the lively striker will still be determined to retain his place in the starting eleven for the start of next season with an impressive performance at Station Park.
Match officials: Referee David Watt; Assistants Gary Falconer and John Black
Weather forecast: Light cloud 6 degrees 14 mph wind
Admission prices: Adults £8, Children / OAPs £5 (two children under the age 14 are admitted for free if they are accompanied by a paying adult).