After a two-year absence, Alloa Athletic are back in the Ladbrokes Championship.
But while they may be long odds for success, Jim Goodwin’s side are gearing up for their second-tier campaign in impressive fashion.
Here’s why we think the Wasps will surprise more than a few people this term…
Trouten leads the way in cup success
Alloa flew out of the blocks in their League Cup opener against Arbroath, netting four first-half goals in a 4-2 victory over the Red Lichties.
But it’s the narrow triumph over Championship heavyweights Dundee United – and the performance of Alloa’s new striker, which may be the real barometer of success.
The Wasps more than held their own in a 1-1 draw at Tannadice, eventually seeing off Dundee United on penalties.
That cup record became three wins from three on Tuesday night, with a comfortable 3-0 triumph at Borough Briggs.
While it’s been a team effort, new boy Alan Trouten has already caught the eye. The prolific hitman has scored in each of his first three games for the club.
Jim making Good in the window
Wasps boss Goodwin has made some extremely savvy acquisitions this summer.
Trouten is perhaps the biggest name amongst them. But fans’ favourite Greig Spence has returned for his fourth stint in Clackmannanshire.
Having hit double figures in the last three league campaigns, he could be key to Alloa’s survival.
There have been eight additions in total, while a number of fringe players have left the club – with five heading to Albion Rovers.
Teenage Motherwell prodigy Jake Hastie will bring midfield flair, as will Adam Brown from Airdrieonians. Meanwhile, there’s added steel in defender Liam Dick, who arrives after a good stints with Stranraer and Dumbarton.
They’ve got a system that works
The first thing any newly-promoted side needs is a solid foundation. And Alloa have just that in the tried and tested 4-3-2-1 system, which they used in almost every game last term.
Key defenders like centre-back Andy Graham and creative right-back Scott Taggart are still on Alloa’s books ahead of the coming campaign.
With pace and creativity in the new midfield additions, they’re likely to continue to threaten out wide. Especially so with long-term Wasps man Iain Flannigan also in the ranks.
As it stands, the odds make Alloa 100/1 outsiders to win the Championship this term.
But while the title is realistically beyond them, they’re capable of survival and more.
Click here for the latest Ladbrokes Championship odds.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing