The two Brians spoke with our Martin McConnell after Saturday’s goalless draw at Almondvale….
Head Coach Brian Rice and skipper Brian Easton spoke to the press
Was that a good point in the circumstances do you think?
“it’s a very, very hard place to come to and play as many teams in this league have found out. To come here and get a clean sheet I’m delighted. There weren’t many chances in the match. It was a scrappy match but we stood up to it. We stood up to it and got the clean sheet as I said and I’m delighted by the endeavour of the boys.”
Is it a point gained?
“Well we’re a point better off than we were this morning. I don’t think that it’s two points dropped, I think that it’s one point gained. Every point that you get here at Livingston I think that you’ve got to work really hard for and that’s one thing that my boys will do. Work really hard for the cause.”
Are you pleased with the way that you played at the back? You were really well drilled and well organised and hardly gave them any chances at all.
“I don’t think that there were many chances in the game at all. I don’t think that any of the two ‘keepers had many saves to make. Set plays here are vital and we had a couple of chances from set plays. Livingston had a couple of chances from set plays too but overall, to get a clean sheet is very, very pleasing.”
Are you alright for Wednesday? Obviously the games are coming thick and fast now.
“I would think so. I didn’t see anyone in there carrying too many knocks. Obviously we go to Celtic Park on Wednesday night and we know how hard that’s going to be. When you’ve got courage, determination and a bit of organisation, then you just never know. I’m not going to be trying anything that Lazio haven’t done and Rennes haven’t done. We’ll just go and try to win a game at Celtic Park. You’ve all heard about the story of David and Goliath. You just never know. You’ve got to believe that on the night, things might go your way and you get the rub of the green. Somebody might do something very special and you can get something from the game.”
Do you take heart from the fact that Celtic slipped up here earlier in the season?
“No, no, because I think that anyone can get beaten here. I think that Livingston are a really good team. I think that we all know that and they’ve proven it last season. I’ve got the utmost admiration for everything that they’ve done here at Livingston football club.”
How do you reflect on that? Do you see it as a point gained I suppose?
“I think so. I mean you know that you’re coming here for a tough game but you still want to come and pick up three points as that’s our aim. As the game has gone on we’ve found ourselves under a fair bit of pressure. So I think that coming away with a clean sheet and a point is good. We’re pleased with that. But saying that, they didn’t have a lot of chances or anything. It’s a good place to come and get a point, especially with a clean sheet.”
When you play at a place like this is there a fear of losing? In terms of not taking chances and things like that.
“I’m not sure. There’s one thing that I’ve noticed that even although they’re a young group of boys, they don’t seem to have that fear. Maybe it’s naivety or whatever but they go into games with so much optimism to win. You know even against Rangers last week, we were going in looking for three points and I’m sure we’ll do that again on Wednesday against Celtic. But today as I said, as the game went on I thought a point would be decent here.”
Does that lack of fear auger well for Celtic Park on Wednesday night? Do you need to go in with a little bit of belief?
“I think so, because if you go to Celtic Park or Ibrox and you’re thinking ‘I hope we don’t get beat’ and you then sit back deep and try to prevent them from scoring, you’re just setting yourself up to be turned over. I prefer the gaffer to go out positive like last week and against Celtic in the last match. You know going out with two up front and attacking. Hopefully we can do that again on Wednesday and give ourselves a chance of getting something there. That’s the aim. It’s not a free hit for us. A lot of people will look at it like a Celtic win already but we won’t. We’ll go in tomorrow and probably get our recovery done and watch a bit of video on Celtic and go try to get something from it.”
It’s been a run that’s seen you get one win in thirteen or something. Do you see signs that things are getting better?
“I’ve seen it probably from the start of the season I think. Apart from the Ibrox game and possibly Motherwell away when we had a man sent off. We’ve never been battered by teams, we’ve always been in games. I think I’ve seen so much from this team in the majority of games this season that it gives me a bit of hope to think that we’ve got a right good chance of doing something good here. We have to fix the wee things. As you say, I see us getting better as the season goes on. Once we fix those wee things then we’ve got a chance of doing well.”