The final stretch

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MONTROSE are optimistic about their chances against Rangers on Saturday after returning to winning ways against East Stirlingshire, writes Sarah McLean.

Following some poor results against Berwick Rangers and Peterhead, the Gable Endies push to stay in the top four looked precarious.

However, two goals from Paul Watson against East Stirlingshire was enough to see Stuart Garden’s side take three points and go back into third place in the league.

Garden said: “Obviously I’m delighted to get the three points and I think we deserved it. I think we were the better team on the day.

“We took the chances we created but it wasn’t an easy game in those conditions.

“The sending off was a bit frustrating, I couldn’t see it well but they were all over celebrating.

“It was a bit harsh that Paul Lunan was picked out from all of them. The referee could have used a bit of common sense with that.”

With just six games to go until the end of the season the club are looking to stay in the top four.

This Saturday, Montrose will welcome Rangers to Links Park for the second time this season with the intention of improving on the 1-1 scoreline they took away from Ibrox in January.

Garden added: “It’s going to be another big one against Rangers and we are wanting to get something out of the game.

“We have proved that we can compete with them so hopefully we will do that on Saturday.”

Garden will be without Lunan following his red card against East Stirlingshire and Jonathan Crawford is also a doubt after picking up an injury.

However, the manager is hopeful that Alan Campbell will return.

Montrose have been given a further boost with players signing up for next season. So far Garden has secured Campbell, Terry Masson, Stephen McNally, David Gray and Paul Watson.

Lloyd Young and Jonathan Crawford are due to sign tonight (Wednesday) and Garden hopes more will follow in the next couple of weeks.

Meanwhile the club are continuing to campaign for Irn-Bru cans. Derek Sim, Montrose FC chairman said: “The Irn-Bru bottles and cans campaign over the past three years has been hugely successful with SFL clubs benefiting to the sum of £70,000 each year.

“Last year Montrose punched above their weight and finished fourth in Division Three which was a great success especially competing against many clubs with considerable larger populations.

“We wish to better the success of 2012 however, this year, the Directors have agreed that all monies raised from this campaign will be donated to the Links Park Community Trust.

“LPCT is now one year old and MFC wishes to further support the charity through the Irn-Bru “Can it Campaign”.