THE first home game of the year Nairn County celebrates the 40th anniversary of their Highland League championship success comes against the club they pipped to the title in a dramatic playoff - Fraserburgh.
The Broch make the trip in fine fettle having dumped Cove Rangers in their last outing a fortnight ago but Nairn will have taken confidence out of their away win at league leaders Brora Rangers last weekend. Everything you need to know ahead of the game is contained below:
Date: Saturday January 9th 2015
Competition: Scottish Highland League
Kick-off: 3.00 pm
Manager: Mark Cowie
Venue: Station Park, Nairn
Previous meeting: Fraserburgh 1 Nairn County 0 September 12th 2015
Last time out: Brora Rangers 1 Nairn County 2; Fraserburgh 4 Cove Rangers 2
League position: Nairn County 5th Fraserburgh 9th
Form guides: Nairn County WWWWLW Fraserburgh WWDLLW
Team news: Stand-in defender Callum Maclean is a major doubt after sustaining a nasty gash to the leg early on in last weekend's win at Brora Rangers. The midfielder - who was playing at centre half - battled on manfully and put in an impressive performance but he is likely to miss this one. Adam Naismith and John Cameron both missed last weekend's game through work commitments but it is hoped they will be available to bolster the squad ahead of the Broch's trip to Station Park this weekend. But Glenn Main is nearing full fitness but is not likely to be risked as he recovers from a toe problem while Wayne Mackintosh and Martin MacDonald are long term knee injury victims.
One to watch: Russell McBride. The rugged centre half has been around the block several times in the Highland League but is still capable of keeping the top strikers at this level quiet. Not only that but his sporadic appearances in attack during his long career meant that when manager Mark Cowie had a striker crisis for the game against Cove Rangers a fortnight ago, he deployed his captain as a centre forward to deadly effect as the Broch upset one of the title favourites with a fine 4-2 win, in which McBride's contribution cannot be understated. Regards of which end of the park he plays at tomorrow, he is sure to be one of the visitors' top performers.
Match officials: Referee Billy Baxter; Assistants Gary McCarthy and Chris Macleod
Weather forecast: Light cloud 3 degrees 13 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).