CARNOUSTIE Panmure manager Ian Gilzean is pleased with the way his side handled a young Dundee United select squad last weekend.
The three-all draw against the United 11 was touch and go at some points according to Ian, who said: “Dundee United have a good young side there, they use the ball well, passing and moving and we had to work hard against them.
“But we could have nicked it at the end there.”
There was also praise for the goalscorers who pulled the Gowfers back from the edge of a second pre-season loss.
Ian said: “Kev Cumming did very well, he bent it into the top corner from outside the box, there was a very good finish on that.
“Scott Gates did well to win the ball and get it to Kev, leaving him just the ‘keeper to beat.”
As for Brian Clark, Ian is grateful that Montrose did not offer him a deal: “In a selfish way I’m quite happy that Montrose didn’t come through in the end.
“That boy can certainly play, he can play forward or midfield and that gives us some good options.”
The Gowfers also fielded Steven Hegarty, a trialist retained by St Andrews, Ian said: “Steven came on at half-time and had a good game.
“We’ll just wait and see how it goes. He’ll get little bits of games here and there and we’ll see what the situation is with St Andrews.
“Our squad is strong and competitive and we need to keep the numbers right. Hopefully what we have will see us through, but we are always on the lookout for talent.”
However, Ian added a caveat to this: “If boys are sitting around not getting playing time or even getting involved in the games at all, then they won’t be happy.”
On the injury front, there was hope on the horizon for Panmure, as John Roberts returned after injuring his ankle during the warm-up at Cove.
Ian said: “John was back to training last week, and I had him on for the last 25 minutes of Saturday’s game, and he didn’t seem to have any troubles at all.”
This Saturday Panmure were due to face Edinburgh University, but with the capital side struggling to put together a team, fellow East of Scotland Premier League team Whitehill Welfare stepped in to provide opposition.
Ian said: “In the end it has fallen OK for us as I didn’t want us to be left on Saturday without a game to play.
“I think in fact Whitehill finished just above Edinburgh University, so that should be a tough game.
“We’re confident for Saturday, why wouldn’t we be? We looked a lot better from Cove to last Saturday’s game, and we have a few more options, a few more players this week.
“We look to improve on every game during the pre-season. We’ll use the cup games to improve again, and we’ll be able to tune it in for the start of the League.”