This week's boss for the match against the new boys in the league is Jack Walton, husband of Susan, father of Sam and Killie through and through. Jack was born in the town and spent his formative years in Hurlford before moving back and now stays within a long throw from Rugby Park. On a Saturday night you can occasionally find DJ Jack behind the decks at Bakers reveling in some 90's house and such but the afternoon is reserved for Killie and hence we thought we'd ask him to share his master plan with us.
Thank you very much to KillieFC.com for asking me to be the manager for the upcoming game against Rangers (hereafter referred to as they or them). This is a game that whether played at Rugby Park or Castle Greyskull holds a lot of memories for myself.
Highlights being Tam Black's trundler or Pasca's nonchalant (played onside by a diddy) header and our victory over them in our first game against them in our first year back in the top flight.
Lowlights being hammered by eight goals in 1980 or having my religious status incorrectly guessed by an old woman with summer teeth screeching down at me from the top of the Copland Road Stand who then launched a greeny in my direction!
Anyway to the game and it's going to be tough because unless we get more loanees before Friday then we have to go with what we have so I will name my team and then explain my thinking.
The Goalie picks himself so to rest of my back four. I am going to ask my boys to stay as a four; I want my fullbacks to play from in to out and not vice versa. I am going to ask them to stay concentrated at all times and for my full backs to tuck in tight and go with runners when need be.
In front of the fullbacks I am going to have MacKenzie on the right and Taylor on the left. My thinking is that they (Sevco) are strong in the wide areas and this gives my full backs protection and gives us good energy in wide positions. In central midfield I am looking for Dicker and Adams to be very competitive but also disciplined - if one pushes on the other has to sit tight. In front of those two I am playing the new lad Green. I like the look of this boy and once up to speed think he could become a favourite down our way. When we don't have the ball he can drop deep to reinforce our midfield.
Up top all on his own I have picked Boyd. My thinking is that a couple of seasons ago at Rugby Park against the Jambos, Boydie absolutely rag-dolled and bullied Danny Wilson and I'm pretty sure that he could do so again.
They like to keep the ball down and moving so we need to stay strong and focused and as much as I don't like to say it then let's get it up in the air and see if they can battle. We unfortunately do not have the players to go out and play teams off the park with the ball on the deck at the moment but we could really hurt them in the air. As long as my team give it everything then I will be happy and if it's tight at the end then we could always bring Dave (Coulibaly) on to try and win it.
Finally going back to memories of us against them and one of the finest games I have ever seen at RP was over 20 years ago between the two reserve teams. A Killie team that featured Danny (that goal) Crainie, Ian Porteous and a trialist from the Buffs called Derek Anderson took on a strong side that featured Durrant, McCoist, Brian Reid and some Russians among others. A high scoring match full of flicks and tricks and a barrow-load of Crainie nutmegs. I'm pretty sure that they edged it 3-4. I wonder if anybody has the team sheets from that night because that would bring back memories?