Gowfers geared up for pre-season programme

CARNOUSTIE Panmure manager Ian Gilzean revealed this week some of the plans he has made for the upcoming pre-season.

Among them are crucial signings and the pre-season friendly line-up.

Versatile striker Kevin Cummings is back on side for next season after missing part of last season due to injury.

Ian told GazetteSport: “Kev was out of contract and has re-signed for the club. He did really well for us last season.

“Kev volunteers at a deer farm out by Cupar as part of his animal husbandry course and he was taken out by one of the big deer, dislocating his shoulder.

“Now he’s injury free and we’re delighted to have him back with us as he gives us great options up front and out wide.”

New signings include midfielder Mike McIlravey, previously on loan from Arbroath FC, who has now signed a contract with the Gowfers.

Ian said: “Arbroath offered him a new deal, but he was a bit concerned about getting playing time with them, so we are delighted that he’s come to us too.”

Former Lochee Harp defender Mark Matthew will also be appearing on the squad sheet next season, after signing a one year extension to his current contract.

As promised, Ian has organised some interesting pre-season friendlies for the Gowfers with the first match being away to Cove Rangers on August 16.

This will be followed by a game against Dundee United’s under-19 squad, and then Edinburgh University’s formidable side the week after.

As an added bonus, the Gowfers will face off against Arbroath Vics in the final few days before the season restarts at the beginning of August.

The Gowfers held their annual presentation night at the Station Hotel, Carnoustie, on Saturday. Among those honoured with trophies were John Roberts, players’ player and player of the year, Robert Hendry, supporters’ player of the year, Kevin Milne top goal scorer and Steven Cook, supporters’ club player of the year.

A snail race was also held on the night to raise money for the club and a good time was had by all.

Ian said: “It was good to see people there, and hopefully the club will have raised some cash. These events are always important to clubs in our position.”

With less than a week before training begins in earnest for the Gowfer’s toughest challenge, the players are taking a well-earned rest.

Ian explained: “The lads are off to Newcastle for a weekend away. It’s something that has fallen by the wayside in the last couple of years, but at the end of last season they decided that it was something they should start up again.

“They’re back on Sunday, and I know that some of the lads have taken Monday off work.”

Despite being let off the leash for a few days, Ian is adamant that the rod will not be spared come training.

He said: “Pre-season training starts on Thursday, so they’ll soon be brought back down to earth!”