FAN POWER HAS PLAYED A BIG PART IN OUR STRONG START TO SEASON, SAYS COVE MIDFIELDER FRASER
SETTLED: Fraser Fyvie says he's loving his time with Cove Rangers.
COVE Rangers midfielder Fraser Fyvie says discovering we are the best supported side in Ladbrokes League Two has given the players a boost ahead of tomorrow’s home clash with on-form Stirling Albion.
Cove’s total attendances for our five home league games so far is close to the 4,000 mark, with the average turn-out at Balmoral Stadium a healthy 762.
“All of us were happy to learn that,” said Fraser.
“It suggests the fans are enjoying what we are trying to do at Balmoral.
“The supporters have played their bit, they always make themselves heard and acknowledge any good play from us.
“It’s important we don’t start getting carried away with ourselves though.
“If we want the fans to keep turning out in big numbers we are going to have to maintain very high standards, which won’t be easy - especially against a side as good as Stirling Albion are.”
Stirling moved away from the League Two relegation zone with an impressive 3-0 victory over Albion Rovers last weekend and have the best defensive record in the division, despite losing their first five league games.
Fraser said: “They are coming here unbeaten in seven matches and have only conceded two goals during that run as well.
“That’s something the Stirling players can rightly be proud of.
“We are also proud of our home record.
“There was a lot of pressure on the club, coming up from the Highland League, to ensure our home form was good.
“If you are to have any chance of doing well in any league that simply has to be the case - we had to make Balmoral a place the other sides don’t fancy coming to.
“We’ve done that so far, but it’s the old cliche isn’t it?
“It’s all about the next home game now and seeing if we can maintain our good start.”
Fraser feels the playing surface at Balmoral Stadium has helped, even though he is happy to admit he has never been keen on performing on artificial pitches.
He said: “It’s well known I’ve never been a big fan but the one we have is by far the best I’ve played on.
“I’ve had two major knee injuries, so it’s understandable that I prefer playing on grass.
“But I’ve been fine at Balmoral because the quality of the pitch is so good.
“It’s also enjoyable to play on, it definitely helps us play the style of football the manager wants.
“It’s not so easy to do that at the likes of Cowdenbeath, where we were last week.
“The pitch there is pretty difficult and it’s hard to pass the ball about on it at times.
“But there’s no excuses when we are at Balmoral, it’s the perfect surface if you are looking to take the ball down and knock it about.
“It definitely gets the best out of us as a team and hopefully that will be the case again this weekend.”
Former Aberdeen, Wigan Athletic, Hibs and Dundee United star Fraser is playing part-time football for the first time in his career.
It was a big decision for him to make at the age of just 26, but one made easier because he already knew the majority of the Cove Rangers squad because they were all also once youth players at Pittodrie.
“It’s been great because so many of us played together when we were younger,” said Fraser.
“More than half of the squad were either in the same youth team as me or a couple of years above.
“I reckon all of them should have played full-time football but, for whatever reason, maybe they chose different career paths or circumstances went against them, it just didn’t happen.
“The bonus for Cove is we now have a group of footballers who, because we had played together before, know each other’s style of play - and are also really good mates.
“That’s what made it really easy to settle in at Cove and why I’m enjoying my football more than I had been for a long while.”