BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport
Falkirk star Paul Watson began this campaign attempting to win a deal at Easter Road – now he is desperate to pile more pressure on Hibs in the race for second spot in the Championship.
The former Ipswich and Livingston defender linked up with Alan Stubbs’ men for pre-season following his decision to leave Raith Rovers and was close to penning a deal with the capital club.
Watson has not looked back, emerging as a key player for Falkirk during an impressive Championship campaign which has seen them lose just three league matches.
He has no regrets about his decision to join Falkirk and has a golden chance to show Hibs what they are missing by helping the Bairns open up a two-point lead in second spot with a win over Alloa today.
He said: “I did a week at Hibs at the start of the season but things fell through there, and coming here has been a fantastic opportunity for me. There was nobody in the wrong, and Hibs were brilliant with me, but it just wasn’t to be.
“I’ve never thought about what could’ve been and I have no regrets. They went a different way, which happens in football, but thankfully I got a move to Falkirk and things have gone really well.
“It’s funny to be going up against them for second, but that just tells you what a great season we’ve had at Falkirk.
“We know we could go ahead of them with a win against Alloa, so it’s a huge incentive for us.”
With Hibs in Scottish Cup action tomorrow, followed by their League Cup final clash against Ross County next weekend, wins over Alloa, Dumbarton and Rangers would see them open up an eight point gap over their playoff rivals by the time the Hibees next play in the league.
He continued: “Hibs have had a great season, progressing in the Scottish Cup and reaching the League Cup final.
“But the gaffer [Peter Houston] has told us to just keep plugging away and picking up points – and, you never know, they might have one eye on the cup final. or other competitions. It could distract them and hopefully that works in our favour.
“Their success in the cups mean we play three times before Hibs next have a league game so, albeit those games will be extremely tough, it’s a good opportunity for us.”
Alloa sit rock-bottom of the Championship and Falkirk registered a 5-0 triumph when the sides last met at the Falkirk Stadium, however Watson is adamant that there will be no danger of complacency today.
He added: “It won’t be an easy game at all. They are battling for every point they can and their manager, Jack Ross, has done a really good job since going there.
“People might think ‘it’ll be another 5-0’ but we know it will not be as simple as that.”