Personnel looking more positive for Wick boss McKenna
Wick Academy will be seeking their first home win in the Highland League this season when they take on Turriff United on Saturday – and there is a renewed sense of optimism around Harmsworth Park as squad numbers begin to pick up.
Experienced trio Davie Allan, Alan Farquhar and Danny Mackay should be available for selection this weekend, while manager Tom McKenna is drafting in several young players who shone in the summer amateur league.
The Scorries are looking to kick-start their campaign after a difficult start which has seen them collect four points from their opening five fixtures. Last Saturday's scheduled game at Fort William was called off after Claggan Park failed a pitch inspection.
“We’re in a better position regarding personnel," McKenna said. "The numbers have significantly improved.
“It was a wee bit of a relief the Fort William game being called off as we were bringing players back who could probably have done with more rest time.”
Farquhar would have missed that one after suffering a head injury in the home defeat to Buckie Thistle, but the captain is now on the mend. “He’ll probably wear some protection for his head but he has been given the all-clear to play on Saturday,” the manager said.
Supporters can expect to see Ben Sinclair, Ryan Campbell and Mark Macadie coming into the Academy squad following their trophy-winning exploits with Wick Groats during the summer.
“Ryan played in a friendly last Wednesday against Golspie and he impressed very much, and he has done well in the summer league," McKenna said. "We’re hoping to get those three tied up and they’ll be in our thoughts regarding the squad for Saturday as well."
We’re in a better position regarding personnel – the numbers have significantly improved.
Academy are also looking at Grant Aitkenhead, who has been playing for Staxigoe in the county league.
Meanwhile, injured pair Marc Macgregor and Jack Henry are still some weeks away from returning.
Academy and Turriff occupy 12th and 13th places respectively in the table, on the same points, although Turriff have played one game more.
“It has been an up and down season for us so far," McKenna admitted. "Regarding results we could probably be in a better place but this is a great opportunity for us to go out and try and get three points.
“We did the double over Turriff last season, we’re playing at home and we’re in a healthier position regarding squad numbers now, and that brings competition with it.
“You can’t underestimate Turriff. Their manager demands a lot from his players.
“They’re a hard-working, honest team so we’re going to have to be better than that if we want to get the three points.”