STAXIGOE United head into tomorrow’s Colin Macleod Memorial Cup final looking for a boost to morale.
Despite a good start to the season, United’s form appears to have dipped of late.
The league title challenge appears to have stuttered and their interest in the Eain MacIntosh Cup ended as John O’Groats knocked them out at the quarter-final stage in an extra-time thriller.
However, there is silverware to be won in a competition that Staxigoe have won twice, with successes in the inaugural event in 2011 and last year.
On paper, they are favourites to win given they will be facing a lower division side in the form of Castletown.
However, there will be a number of factors up against them. The final is being played at Castletown’s Back Park – as it always has been – and the competition was set up in honour of one of Castletown’s legends, Colin Macleod, who died in a road crash in 2010.
Not to mention Castletown are flying high on top of Division Two and have already taken two top-flight scalps en route to tomorrow’s final.
But as far as Staxigoe boss Andrew Banks is concerned, he needs to get United’s season back on track – and what better way to do it than retain the cup they won last year.
He said: “We’re a bit low on morale at this stage of the season but winning the cup would give us a good chance to get our morale back up to where we want it to be.
“We’re coming off the back of a disappointing loss in the other cup competition so this gives us a chance to make amends.
“However, Castletown are flying just now. They will have home advantage, but Back Park is the best pitch in the county which suits us and our style of play.
“Because we’re in a higher division, we’re favourites on paper – but on current form, you might have to put that tag on Castletown.”
The Staxigoe gaffer also stated that their task might be harder given their injury list.
“However, it is an ideal opportunity for some of the boys on the fringes of the first-team squad to come in.”