JOHN Rankin has urged Falkirk to ensure they are not the fall-guys as they host a St Mirren side who are the only team in senior British football without a league win.
The Buddies are hopeful they can follow Tuesday’s 5-1 hammering of Spartans in the Scottish Cup with a first success in this season’s Championship.
Rankin has been left stunned by the Paisley side’s struggles, insisting he expected them to be pushing for promotion and not propping up the whole division with just four points from 13 games.
And, with the Bairns desperate themselves for the victory that would move them up to third, Rankin is adamant they will not be the first St Mirren conquest of the campaign.
Rankin, who suffered relegation with Dundee United last season, said: “I know it’s too early to say St Mirren are fighting for their lives, but they’re fighting for their first win.
“At some point that’s going to happen and the determination is it’s not going to happen against us.
“I’m definitely surprised by St Mirren. I don’t think at the start of the season anybody expected that.
“People were tipping them for promotion and looking for them to be in the play-offs.
“They’ve got a good side, but things like that happen. It’s just a case of them getting one result and then it could turn.
“I’m sure they’ll get it but we’re looking to make sure it’s not against us and to go and get the three points ourselves.”
Earlier in the season, Falkirk were eyeing the Championship summit after four consecutive wins, but a recent run of four games without a victory has left them sitting outside the play-off places.
And, following a 4-2 defeat to Raith and a 1-1 draw with Morton in their last two home games, Rankin insists they must improve at the Falkirk Stadium if they are to push for promotion this term.
He added: “We need to turn our stadium into a fortress. In the last two games at home we’ve lost to Raith and drawn with Morton.
“That’s not good enough. For a team that’s looking to challenge, one point from six is nowhere near what we should be looking at.”