3 reasons Stenhousemuir will avoid League 1 relegation tussle
They may occupy the Ladbrokes League 1 relegation play-off spot at the time of writing, but recent signs show Stenhousemuir are unlikely to stay there for long, with Brown Ferguson’s side beginning to find their groove.
Here’s what’s going right for Stenny right now…
Goals coming from all over
While the likes of Peterhead and Albion Rovers have tended to rely on one man for goals – Rory McAllister and Ross Stewart respectively – it’s been a different story for Stenny, whose goals have come from all over the park.
With seven different players having contributed their last 10 league goals, Ferguson’s men have a range of attacking threats. While the sides around them are increasingly being contained by the stifling of their star striker, the Warriors attacking impetus has proved tough to handle for defences of late.
From Alan Cook’s fantastic free-kick against Airdrieonians to Kieran Miller’s instinctive finish in the victory over Stranraer, they have plenty of different ways to cause problems up front.
Away day set-up reaping dividends
Ferguson’s charges are quickly establishing a reputation as away-day specialists, winning four of their last seven Ladbrokes League One games on the road, with their 5-0 win at Airdrieonians making them the first visitors to hit five in the league at Excelsior Stadium since Rangers back in August 2013.
With the boundless energy of players like Willis Alves Furtado and Liam McCroary in midfield and the clinical finishing of Colin McMenamin up front, they’ve proven to be hugely effective on the counter-attack.
That gives Stenny a huge advantage on some of sides around them. Stranraer have won three of their last 14 away games in the third tier, while East Five have won just two of their last eight.
Young squad continuing to improve
The Warriors boss has put faith in a remarkably young side this season, with six of the starting XI who faced Stranraer in the last league game aged 23 or under – including teenagers Furtado and Oli Shaw.
However, after a difficult first period of the season which saw the Ochilview outfit take just six points from their opening ten games, things have improved dramatically – with the young talents learning on the job and gelling as a side. The signs suggest they will only get better as the season continues…
Next up is the visit of Airdrieonians – a game the Warriors are handsomely priced to win at 12/5.
Meanwhile, ultra-optimistic fans could well be tempted by a repeat of the 5-0 hiding they dished out to the Diamonds in December at odds of 225/1.
All Odds and Markets are corrrect as of the date of publishing