Jun 13 2012 by David Ogilvie, Stirling Observer Wednesday
STIRLING Albion will face Falkirk in the first round of the Ramsdens Cup.
They will travel to Falkirk Stadium to meet the current holders of the trophy on Saturday, July 28.
Steven Pressley’s side beat Hamilton Accies 1-0 to lift the trophy in April but the Binos claimed a shock win on penalties after a 0-0 draw when the teams last met in this competition two years ago.
Albion have confirmed their first new signings of the summer after boss Greig McDonald landed striker Bradley Coyne and defender David McClune.
Nineteen-year-old Coyne was previously with St Mirren. He has also played for East Stirling and Forfar, for whom he scored three times against the Binos last season.
Bradley is the son of former Dundee, Celtic and Motherwell hitman Tommy Coyne. His brother, Tommy junior, played a couple of games as a trialist during Allan Moore’s reign at Forthbank.
McClune (29) is a defender/midfielder who can count St Johnstone and Alloa among his former clubs. He joins Stirling after spending last year with Brechin City, although injury restricted his appearances at Glebe Park.
Binos boss Greig McDonald, who spent last week taking his UEFA B licence at Largs along with assistants Marc McCulloch and Shaun Fagan, said: “I’m delighted that Bradley and David have agreed to join us.
“A number of clubs were after them and it is pleasing they opted to ply their trade here. I’m sure the Stirling fans will make them feel welcome.
“Bradley really impressed us last year with his performances for East Stirling and Forfar. He’s a young lad who is hungry to do well and score goals and I’m certain he will be a great signing.
“David is a quality player who I have played against for a number of years. He is a fantastic professional whose experience will be a great asset to us both on and off the pitch.”
Stirling Albion operations director Stuart Brown added: “Greig, Shaun and Marc have done a fantastic job in putting together the squad for next season. I believe it’s a great mix of youth and experience.
“We’re not quite done but we’re getting close, with a goalkeeper being the obvious gap to fill. Having the squad almost completed before pre-season training puts us in a better position than this time last year and hopefully gives us the best possible chance of bouncing back to SFL2.”
McDonald now has a signed squad of 22 players ahead of pre-season training, which begins on Tuesday. Sam Filler is the only keeper on the books alongside U19 goalie Jamie Cleland.
The first two public friendly matches are away to Highland League duo Strathspey Thistle on July 20 and Brora Rangers the following day.
Other signings are possible before then but striker Gareth Wardlaw, previously with Ayr and Cowdenbeath and linked with a switch to Stirling, has joined Second Division East Fife while former Binos Andy Graham and Ross Forsyth have both signed for First Division new boys Dumbarton.
The fixtures for the 2012/13 campaign will be published by the Scottish Football League at 9am on Monday. Stirling have stated at home in their three previous seasons in Division Three, beating Peterhead in 2001/02, losing to Albion Rovers in 2002/03 and drawing with Cowdenbeath the following year.
Next season’s William Hill Scottish Cup will start earlier than usual, with the first round on August 25. Stirling Albion will enter the tournament in round two on September 29.