Preview: Albion Rovers v St Mirren

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St Mirren and Albion Rovers face each other competitively for the first time in 36 years tomorrow afternoon as they meet in the 3rd Round of the IRN-BRU Cup at the Exsel Group Stadium.
The Coatbridge side are managed by former Aberdeen midfielder Darren Young. He left Aberdeen in 2003 to join Dunfermline where he spent five years before signing for Dundee. Spells followed with Queen of the South, Morton and Alloa before taking over as player manager at Albion Rovers in the summer of 2014.
Young steered the Wee Rovers to the League Two Championship in his first season in charge and saw his side hold their own in League One last season having fell a couple of points short of making the promotion playoffs.
At the ripe old age of 37 Young still pulls the boots on although he has only made one appearance so far this season, in the previous round of the IRN-BRU Cup when Rovers knocked out Hamilton Academical Under-20 side
The side from Coatbridge have not had the best of starts to the season. After being eliminated from the Betfred Cup with three draws and a loss, the league campaign started with a 2-2 draw away to East Fife then a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Brechin City. A victory came in Round 2 of the IRN-BRU Cup that was followed by an impressive comeback up at Peterhead earning a share of the points after being down two-nil. Last weekend they lost 4-0 to high-flying Alloa Athletic.
St Mirren had a fight back of their own last week as a last minute equaliser from Tom Walsh countered Jamie Adams’ early opener for Ayr United.
The Buddies and the Wee Rovers last faced each other a couple of years ago in a pre-season friendly but the last competitive match-up was on 30th August 1980 when Saints won 5-0 at Love Street in the second leg of a League Cup tie, having won 2-1 through at Coatbridge in the first leg.
Cup ties are usually exciting and going on good cup runs can be pretty special but both sides will no doubt take tomorrow’s break from league football as a chance to loosen up from the pressures of their leagues and see it as an opportunity to try and find a bit of form before they get back to the bread and butter of league football again next weekend.