Dunfermline winger Joe Cardle hoping to land a hat-trick of Irn-Bru Cup triumphs

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Dunfermline winger Joe Cardle admits he is desperate to land a hat-trick of Challenge Cup triumphs and kick-start the Pars’ season.

The 29-year-old first got his hands on the trophy with Airdrie in 2008 and then helped Raith Rovers stun Rangers in the final six years later.

Dunfermline take on Dundee United for the fourth time this term in today’s Irn-Bru Cup quarter-final and will attempt to avenge Tuesday’s Championship defeat at Tannadice, a result that has left the Fife outfit 18 points behind this afternoon’s opponents.

(Pic: SNS)
(Pic: SNS)

Cardle knows the competition is not taken seriously in some quarters but insists he cherishes his two winner’s medals.

Cardle said: “It’s a competition that I’ve won twice and I’d love to win it again.

“You hear people saying it’s a Mickey Mouse cup but it’s a medal at the end of the day and it’s something special.

“It’s a cup final, we played against Rangers when I was with Raith Rovers and it was a special day, it was a full stadium at Easter Road.

“I’ve won the league twice with Dunfermline as well, to win a league and a cup is the same thing for me, it’s a special thing.

“It can also help you in the league so that’s what we’re aiming for, we’ve not had the best of starts in the league but a wee cup run could help us.

“We know ourselves that we’ve not played to our potential at all so far this season, we’ve got so much more to give.”

Cardle came on as a late substitute when United visited East End Park in September but watched on from the bench in shock as team-mates Gavin Reilly, Nicky Clark and Paul McMullan all had first half penalties saved by goalkeeper Cammy Bell in the 3-1 defeat.

He added: “When I was watching all those penalties getting saved, frustrated is one word you could use.

“I couldn’t believe it happened, even with the third there was not a lot of confidence on the bench at all.

“If I had been on I probably wouldn’t have put myself forward for the first one, the second and the third yeah. It was a strange, strange day.

“I thought we were the better team and we had the chances with the penalties. It was a one-off and hopefully we can make up for it.”

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