Allan Johnston hopes Scottish Cup team bonding can help Dunfermline kickstart Championship season



ALLAN Johnston hopes team bonding on the road to Hampden can help drive Dunfermline to success.

The Pars shelled out for an overnight stay last Friday ahead of their tricky Scottish Cup clash with Highland League leaders Buckie Thistle.

The move paid off, with the Fifers progressing to the fourth round with a hard-fought 5-3 triumph over the Jags.

(Pic: Craig Brown @craigy_broon)
(Pic: Craig Brown @craigy_broon)

And Johnston believes the successful trip to the Highlands could help the East End Park men as they seek a hat-trick of consecutive wins for the first time this term.

He said: “We’ve managed to keep the majority of the players from last season but obviously there’s a few new boys.

“So, it always helps when there’s a wee bit of team bonding and they get to know each other that wee bit better.

“It always helps when you get a couple of wins as well and we’ve just got to build on the momentum and keep the confidence up, and try to carry it into this weekend.”

Until triumphs over St Mirren and Buckie, Dunfermline had to go back to July and the Betfred Cup victories over Arbroath and Cowdenbeath for consecutive victories.

It has been a bitterly disappointing spell for a side used to the success of last season’s romp to the League One title.

However, with Morton and Queen of the South to follow tomorrow’s home clash with Ayr United, Johnston is optimistic they can show they have turned a corner.

He added: “That’s the first time we’ve won back-to-back games since the start of the season – it’s incredible.

“But hopefully it’s the first of many.

“It’s an important period over the next five or six weeks. We’ve managed to get two wins and we’ve just got to build on that.

“We’re playing against Ayr, who have always given us tough games, we’ve always been very close, but hopefully we can come out on top.”