Published: 17/01/2013 02:00 - Updated: 16/01/2013 14:25

New signing leaves Conlon with tough choice

Written byBy David Lyons

FORT William manager Danny Conlon is facing a selection headache ahead of his team’s game against Strathspey on Saturday.

With keeper Daniel Bell arriving on loan from Inverurie Locos last week, Conlon now has to chose between the new signing and Ian Macleod.

Conlon said: "It’s a decision I’ll have to make. It’s a difficult one, because although he lacks a bit of experience Ian Macleod has done well for us. Danny Bell is a good keeper with experience at a couple of different Highland League sides, which is the kind of experience we feel like we need."

Last weekend Fort William were supposed to travel to Formartine, but the game was cancelled because of a waterlogged pitch. The manager said he had no choice but to give his players a break:

"I gave the guys the weekend off. Because of the lack of facilites in Fort William it’s hard to get anywhere at short notice."

But Conlon had his men training on Monday and Wednesday night to ensure they are prepared for the game against Strathspey.

Last season Fort William drew 2-2 with Strathspey at Claggan Park, and were only beaten 1-0 when the two met earlier this season. Conlon had hoped his team could use the match against Formartine to prepare for what he sees as a vital game this Saturday:

"It was dissapointing not to play last weekend, especially with an important game this Saturday. There are a few of the guys needing game time. We also had a new edition to the squad, goalkeeper Daniel Bell on loan from Inverurie Locos, he would have been involved at some stage if the game had gone ahead.

"I’ve always said we have to pick up points from the teams there or there abouts near ourselves. We feel as if we could get some points."

Conlon thinks home advantage, and the two sides’ different styles, will play into Fort William’s hands: "They’re a competitive, physical side. They’re a bit stronger than us, but we hope on the open spaces at Claggan Park we can get the ball down and play."

The game will be an early start, with kick-off scheduled for 2pm, because the floodlights at Claggan Park are being repaired.

The Fort would have been missing six first team players before the game with Formartine, and Conlon says the team news this week has been no less turbulent:

"This is Fort William, it changes every day. We should be stronger this weekend than we would have been last Saturday, but I’m not expecting any of the guys who were out last weekend to be back."

Although Conlon believes there has been interest in the vacant chairman’s position at Fort William, which Derek mcGillivray stepped down from last week, he explained he was keeping out of boardroom issues and concentraing on preparing his squad:

"I believe they’re having talks with one or two people, but I couldn’t say who or in what capacity they’re interested in coming in. That’s all behind the scenes, my job is just to get a team on the pitch."

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