Russell McLean looking to replicate last week’s first 45 minutes for full 90 in North-East Derby against Cove Rangers

Sep 17, 2021

Blue Toon striker Russell Mclean is looking to hit the same heights against Cove Rangers to that of last weeks 3-2 victory over Clyde at Balmoor. The 23-year-old scored Peterhead’s third and help secure their second League 1 win of the season and he said: “It was important to stop the disappointing run that we were on in terms of results. Some of our performances had been good in patches but just not good enough for the full 90 minutes.”

“I think there was maybe a small touch of that against Clyde on Saturday, when in the first half hour we absolutely blew them away and showed how good we are and that forced Clyde to make 2 substitutions. However, in the second half we didn’t perform to the levels we had in the first half”.

“In saying that we were comfortable enough and had the better chances. We probably could’ve scored a couple more but if we can get that first half performance for 90 minutes then we’ll certainly see ourselves going up in the league”.

Jim McInally’s side now take on visitors Cove Rangers and former Montrose forward McLean views building momentum as being beneficial to the squad’s confidence.

McLean said: “Momentum is hugely important. You look at the league and it is going to be difficult for anyone to build momentum, as all the teams are so tightly grouped together. There is quality in every squad so whilst it will be difficult, if we can get a couple of wins under our belt, it would really help us”.

“You could probably say that in the couple of weeks before Clyde some boys have been low on confidence. Saturday would’ve done them the world of good and if we can get another couple of wins together then the confidence starts to grow and come out in the team”

Peterhead last faced Paul Hartley’s side in July in a fine 3-1 victory for McInally’s side in the Premier Sports Cup, and McLean sees no reason why this performance cannot be replicated again this weekend.

The towering striker said: “That win should give us confidence for picking up three points. Cove haven’t changed much in terms of their personnel from when we last played them so there’s no reason why we shouldn’t take positives from that last meeting. I thought in that game we played against them, we played very well, so if we put that performance in again then there’s no reason why we cannot get a positive result”

A win on Saturday could see the Balmoor side climb to fifth in the table and despite this, McLean who is the joint top goal scorer this season along with Niah Payne, believes it is too early to be fixated on our league position.

“It’s early doors but it would be good to get up the table and get ahead of Cove but its too early to be worrying about where you are in the league,” said McLean before adding: “Before last weekend we were bottom of the league, so it just shows that with a couple of good results you fly up the league and a couple of bad results you plummet down. We’re not going to get too carried away about where we are after the game on Saturday but it would be nice to be further up the table.”

“League One for the last few years has been by far the most competitive league. You look at what happened last year, 5 or 6 games to go you and you think Falkirk have all but won the league but they end up being out of the play-offs.”

“That is how close League One is, and I think if last season hadn’t been shortened Peterhead could’ve found themselves in the play-offs.  It is always competitive and I think it’ll be that way for the rest of the season.”