BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport
LOUIS LONGRIDGE has predicted a family feud – on and off the pitch – as he prepares to cross swords with his brother Jackson.
Sibling rivalry will abound on Saturday when the on-loan Falkirk ace lines up against Livingston and Louis fully expects his parents, David and Elaine, to be torn as their boys do battle at Almondvale.
And Longridge reckons they might resort to backing one son each as a happy medium to an impossible choice.
However, he hopes they both do their folks’ proud as they put brotherly love on hold for 90 minutes.
“I’ve already had this conversation with Jackson and I think it might create a bit of a divide in the camp!” smiled Longridge. “I don’t know whether he gets my mum or my dad, but having one parent each probably seems like the fairest split. We’ll let them fight it out.
“They’ll just be hoping that we both have a good game and the full family will be there so it’s a special occasion.
“There are four brothers and we are all really into our football, so my dad was always driving us the length of the country, making sure we made it to training and games. My mum was always preparing kits and supporting us.
“They are such a massive influence in us going into football, and having the right discipline and mentality. We’ve got a lot to thank them for and hopefully Saturday is a proud moment and isn’t too stressful for them!”
Casting aside youth football and reserve matches, the Longridge brothers have only clashed on one occasion, with Louis netting the winning goal for Hamilton last season as Accies claimed a 2-1 Betfred Cup triumph over Livingston.
He lapped up the moment, much to Jackson’s annoyance, and he is determined to come out on top again this weekend.
Longridge continued: “I’ve only played against him once competitively before and I scored against Livingston for Hamilton.
“When you score, you always get that adrenaline rush and celebrate and don’t rally think about who is on the other side – so I enjoyed the moment, totally forgetting that my brother was in the Livi team. So that wound him up a little bit! I’m sure he’d do the same if he scored into one of my teams.
“It’s all friendly banter. We’ll be in contact before the game and wind each other up a bit. We are really close and we know we can put that rivalry to bed after the 90 minutes, but during the game there’s no brotherly love.”
Falkirk’s need for a victory is desperate with a six-match winless run in the Championship leaving them five points adrift of Dumbarton in the relegation playoff place.
However, Longridge knows better than most what a daunting challenge Livi pose.
He added: “Because Jackson plays there, I go along to watch Livingston any time I can. Sometimes they have played well, sometimes they have ground results out, but more often than not they are getting points on the board. They are having a great season and probably never expected to be in the position they are in.
“But we need to go there, roll our sleeves up and find a way to get a result.”