Magnificent seven

Pic credit: Christopher Coutts.
Pic credit: Christopher Coutts.
  • Skipper wants seven wins to secure title
  • Striker moves to 10 goals after crazy strike against Stranraer
  • Campbell says Blues best team in league “next to us”

Forfar Athletic skipper Gavin Swankie thinks his side will need to win all their remaining games in order to secure the League One title.

Station Park’s Captain Fantastic was speaking after his wondergoal - his 10th league strike of the season - saw the Loons see off fellow championship chasers Stranraer 1-0 on Saturday.

That victory put Dick Campbell’s team level on points with league leaders Greenock Morton, and Swankie said the victory was vital following a disappointing 3-2 defeat at Peterhead in mid-week.

Gavin said: “We’re joint top of the league now and if you asked us at the start of the season, where do you want to be with seven games to go. we’d all have said top of the league. We’re there and at the start of the year the league was our aim, and we’ve got a chance.

“We said in the changing room that this was must-win after Tuesday night. We had a great start then lost a couple of goals in a couple of minutes. We got one back and we thought coming back with a point having a man sent off is a good result, then we lost another one right in the last minute.

“So this was definitely must-win; if we’d got beat the title was out of our hands.”

This was definitely must-win; if we’d got beat the title was out of our hands.

Gavin Swankie

Swankie’s 19th minute goal, which takes his season tally to double figures, was the kind of astonishing finish that fans have come to expect from the club talisman - the 31-year-old firing past David Mitchell when he was practically on the byline.

Gav said getting the three points was the main thing for the title chasing outfit, with the Loons having beaten the top two sides in their last three outings.

The skipper continued: “I thought the goalie was sliding down at my feet so that’s why I tried to knock it by him, and the only thing I had on was to hit it towards goal. Luckily it went in.

“It wasn’t the best of games but both teams created chances, though they didn’t seem to take them. Hilson’s had a couple of great chances and hit the post.

“But three points is the main thing.”

The home win puts Forfar on course for a mammoth derby with Brechin City this coming Saturday, with the Glebe Park clash pretty much as big as it gets as both clubs push on towards the League One crown.

Swankie knows how big the fixture will be but he stressed all the games ahead of the team are massive, adding that he thinks seven wins from seven games is needed for Forfar to take the title.

He added: “It’s another massive one next week but we’ve got seven massive games left. If you want to win the league we’ve got to win six of them, if not seven.

“There are six or seven teams that could potentially win this league.

“It’s turned out to be a great league and a great battle. Our aim is to try and win it.”

Gaffer Campbell was thrilled to see his boys beat a team he said is the best in the league - next to his own.

Dick said: “I have said it previously, I think Stranraer are the best team in the league next to us. Stranraer have earned the right to be where they are this year.

“That’s a great result for us. I thought we were a bit fortunate to be 1-0 up but it was a world class goal. Yet my goalie didn’t really have any classic saves to make.

“Last week we went to Morton and won 2-0, then we slipped up in the week and I thought we looked a wee bit jaded before we started the game.

“But I’m absolutely delighted with the performance of my team, particularly against a team like Stranraer because they’ve earned the right to be much respected. I’m just very happy.

“At this stage of the season it’s about three points and no goals against, and I’m absolutely delighted.”

Stranraer boss Stephen Aitken was disappointed with his team’s lack of cutting edge.

Aitken said: “We put a lot of effort in but there’s not a lot to show for effort. It’s a silly goal to lose.

“For long spells of the game we probably edged it.”