City must make more than a point

Edinburgh CITY, the draw specialists of the Central Taxis Premier Division, face the only team that they have beaten in the league this season when they entertain the students of Edinburgh University at Meadowbank Stadium.

Only three weeks ago City travelled the short distance to Peffermill and won 3-0 with goals from Ruaraidh Scott, Euan Black and Ryan Wilson to register their solitary victory along with eight draws and two losses which leave them in a mid-table position.

"Actually, we are trying to beat Manchester United's current record as they have drawn only seven of their Barclays Premier League games so we are one ahead at the moment," smiled City's joint manager, John Green. "When Gary Jardine and myself took over the managerial reins at City the first thing we wanted to do was make us hard to beat. We are obviously achieving that although conversely we are not beating too many teams either.

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"We know that we are not the finished article and that there is some way to go. We don't lose a lot of goals - 13 in our 11 league games - and although we are creating chances we are not taking them. "It is a wee bit frustrating and there are no easy games in the Premier Division. We are developing young players not only in techniques and formations but also their mental strengths which is very important to youngsters.

Turning his attention to tomorrow's return game against Edinburgh University, who sit in third position nine points ahead of City and with a game in hand, Green said: "We know that it will be a difficult game and in our last meeting we had a great overall performance in which every player worked very hard.

"We know that Douglas (Samuel] always has the students well organised and after that last result they will be looking for revenge. However, we are the only team - apart from Spartans - to take three goals off them and I don't think that too many people expected that.

"We have injury problems ahead of tomorrow with Ross Guthrie, Kevin Morrison, Jamie Bain and Shaun Harrison all out while Ian McFarland is suspended and Grant Vallance is on holiday. However, we have defenders like Ruaraidh Scott and Joe Dingwall along with the experienced Ross Macnamara. We will bring three of our Under 19 players - Gordon Donaldson, Ryan Mya and James Elliot - into the squad." Meanwhile, Samuel has no such problems with finding the back of the net for his University side has scored 16 goals in their last four games since that defeat by the Meadowbank side.

"The conditions at Peffermill when City beat us 3-0 were not conducive to good football although both sides tried to play entertaining and attractive football," said Samuel. "We were very disappointed in our second half performance when we lost three goals.

"We were punished for individual errors although City played very well in that second half and got the break to score the opening goal and in the end fully deserved to win. We have played some nice football and scored some excellent goals. It has been a real squad and collective effort to put us in a position to secure our Premier Division status for a record-breaking eighth consecutive season.

"We go into tomorrow's game full of confidence but at the same time full of respect for the talent within the Edinburgh City squad.

"Personally, I have a great deal of respect for Gary [Jardine] and John [Green] and how well organised and prepared their side is and it is sure to be another tight encounter.

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"Although we are in the middle of a tough run of fixtures I reckon that if we pick up another couple of wins before Christmas that would secure our Premier Division survival then we could start the second half of the season with new aims and objectives."

The return of Jack Beacher and Michael Hazeldine to the squad after long-term injuries has given the students a boost, especially going forward, while James Craigen is also in exceptional form in an attacking midfield role.

The game kicks off at 2.30pm with admission prices 4 for adults and 2 for concessions.