Arbroath manager Dick Campbell is preparing for a tense showdown with his former club Forfar this weekend as they battle for the Ladbrokes League 2 title.
But despite spending the best part of a decade at Station Park before parting company last year, the experienced coach insists he couldn’t care less what happens to his old side this weekend.
Campbell’s Arbroath travel to Stirling Albion for their final game of the season just a point clear of Forfar, having spent most of the season chasing Gary Bollan’s side – and they know all they have to do is match Forfar’s result against Annan to lift the title.
And whilst he doesn’t hold any grudges, Campbell won’t be losing any sleep if he ends up stopping his former colleagues from being crowned Ladbrokes League 2 champions this weekend.
Speaking exclusively to Ladbrokes News, he said: “I spent seven and a half years at Forfar, and when I look back on it, I’d probably be on my testimonial year at this point.
“I’ve been in the game long enough now to understand that the hierarchy of Forfar wanted a change and it’s not for me to decide who’s right and who’s wrong.
“It was a surprise to everybody in Scottish football, but they made that decision. I didn’t have any input in it at all and I’m totally focused on one thing and that’s Arbroath.
“Arbroath is a big football club. You’ll see that with the number of fans we’re taking through on Saturday – we’re expecting 1,500 people!
“But going back to the Forfar thing, I’m not bothering my backside what happens, I just want to win the game at Stirling.”
Regardless of how things pan out on Saturday, Campbell admits he’s happy with how this season has gone, and he seems pleased with how far Arbroath have progressed under his tutelage so far.
He added: “We’ve had a successful campaign. I’ve only been here since last March when were bottom of the league, so our objective this season was to get to the play-offs and we’ve done that.
“We haven’t won anything yet, but you’d have to say it’s been a reasonably successful season. It’s a work in progress and progress is the main word there. We’re a good football club, with good players, and I’m very happy with things currently.
“We have one game left, and if you’d said to me at the start of the season that we’d have to win our last game to win the championship, I’d have been happy. There’s no better time to go top of the league than the last game.
“In the first half of the season we drew nine games, and that was a big, big problem for us. We had a goalkeeping problem and half of those nine games we should have won. But in terms of amassing points, Forfar had a sensational start.
“On January 2nd, we were 11 points behind them, but never was there anything apart from positivity coming from our camp. We’ve got good players, a reasonably experience management team, and we’ve fought and fought.
“But it’ll all pale into insignificance if we don’t win the game on Saturday.”
After all these years managing in the Scottish lower leagues, it’s high-stake days like Saturday which keep Campbell’s passion for football burning.
He concluded: ”Oh my goodness, winning championships and promotions are what it’s all about.
“I’ve been in the dugout for over 1250 games – that why I’ve got no hair! Days like Saturday are what drives you on and keeps you motivated.
“I’m motivated by one thing: winning.”
Arbroath are 8/13 to beat Stirling at the weekend and lift the League 2 trophy.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing