High stakes for both Dunfermline and Raith in last Fife derby of season

Dunfermline Athletic may have lifted themselves off the bottom of the cinch Championship in recent weeks, but manager John Hughes knows their position is still perilous.

Dunfermline Athletic and Raith Rovers do battle at East End Park on Wednesday night.
Dunfermline Athletic and Raith Rovers do battle at East End Park on Wednesday night.

The Pars are three points clear of bottom-placed Queen of the South, both teams having played 31 games. With five remaining, Dunfermline’s twin aim is now trying to move away from Queens and catch eighth-placed Ayr United and thus avoid a relegation play-off.

Wednesday night’s match against Fife rivals Raith Rovers at East End Park therefore carries extra significance. This is their game in hand over the Honest Men and they could move to within two points of them with a victory.

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“It’s a big month for the club,” said Hughes. We know the importance of the month – it doesn’t faze us.

“If you lose then you suffer the consequences and you have to embrace it. You have to use it as your fuel to go and get success.

“It will be the same for Raith Rovers. They’re trying to get into the play-offs, and that’s nip and tuck as well.

“So from now until the end of the season, every game and every team will have something to play for.”

Dunfermline host a Raith Rovers team desperate to get back into the promotion play-off mix. John McGlynn’s men are also high on confidence after winning the SPFL Trust Trophy last weekend.

“Wednesday night is going to be difficult,” said McGlynn. “The Pars have had 10 days to prepare for this match. We’ll have three.

“We know that five wins will secure a Championship playoff position. It’s a tall order but one that we are capable of doing.”

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