Dunfermline look to kick-start their season with a lengthy cup run

Defender John Potter hopes Dunfermline’s season can be ignited by a successful run in the William Hill Scottish Cup.

The Pars, bottom of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League with one win in 17 games, travel to Inverness for a fourth-round fixture as the road to Hampden begins for the top-flight sides.

Potter said: “It may be a cup game, maybe the pressure will be off a wee bit from the league, but for us it’s vitally important we go and try to get the win we’ve been looking for.”

Sign up to our Football newsletter

Sign up to our Football newsletter

Dunfermline have players who have experienced Hampden showpiece finals previously with Potter having played in the 2010 League Cup final while at St Mirren, Gary Mason was in the Pars team which lost the 2004 Scottish Cup final to Celtic and David Graham was part of the Gretna team that lost the 2006 final on penalties to Hearts.

Potter hopes those memories can inspire the Pars.

The Pars’ last victory was the 1-0 win at Easter Road on 5 November and the resumption of SPL duties will see Hibernian travel to East End Park next weekend. The Pars have a game in hand on Hibs and would go above their opponents in the table with victory. However, Dunfermline would have to do something they are yet to do this term – win at home.

Manager Jim McIntyre is seeking to bring in new signings this month in order to support the survival fight. It is a move Potter supports.

He added: “Hopefully there will be a couple of new additions. Any time you can sign good players it helps the rest of the players. The league form has not been good enough, the performances haven’t been good enough.”

Recruiting a new goalkeeper has become necessary after Paul Gallacher was ruled out for the season with a shoulder injury. Potter added: “It’s a major disappointment for us. He’s been excellent so far this season, probably our most consistent player. It’s a big blow for us.”

Meanwhile, Inverness manager Terry Butcher has called for more of the same from his players as they prepare to host the Pars.

The Highlanders endured a difficult start to the season. But four points against fellow SPL strugglers Aberdeen and Hibernian have helped Thistle to haul themselves above both Hibs and Dunfermline in the table.

He said: “We are aiming to maintain the form that we have shown. The boys are very confident now, they have had two good results, two good performances and a good performance in the Rangers match as well before that. The boys haven’t been playing badly this season. There’s just been the odd occasion when they’ve not really hit any sort of form or level of performance that they normally hit.

“Those displays have been very, very rare. Generally, the boys have done very well and I’ve been very pleased with them. It’s been a good week, a good festive period for us even though we have only played two matches. In comparison to last year, it has been marvellous.”