We'll Meet Again
Updated Friday, 26th January 2007
The combinatuion of league and cup games can bring up some odd series of fixtures but at least Killie will be fully prepared for Tuesday's CIS Cup semi-final.
Killie boss Jim Jefferies is looking forward to the double header against Falkirk over the next 4 days. The teams meet in the SPL on Saturday and then again on Tuesday in the CIS Insurance Cup semi-final at Fir Park. With both Celtic and Rangers out of the cup, Jefferies believes his players may never have a better chance of picking up some silverware. St Johnstone take on Hibs at Tynecastle in the other semi-final on Wednesday night, and by that time the Rugby Park boss is hoping to be looking forward to taking on the winners in the final at Hampden in March. Killie are just behind fifth placed Falkirk in the SPL - on goal difference - but Jefferies said that despite his quest for a top-six spot this season, the cup clash looms large in the background.
'I want to win the two of them'
He said: "If people ask which one of the games we would rather win, you are better sticking to the old cliche, 'I want to win the two of them'. But for the team that loses on Saturday, there are still seven games to go (before the league splits into two). If one of the teams was six points adrift of the other and needed to win then it might be different but you can make up the points. At training this morning, I asked which players had played in a cup final before and Garry Hay and Allan Johnston were the only two. It's a great occasion to look forward to if we win the semi, it's a major cup final and, let's be honest about it, some of them might never get a better chance. How often are Rangers and Celtic out at this stage? Usually you have to play them somewhere along the line."
With Hibs' falling to a 3-0 defeat to Inverness on Sunday, Jefferies has further cause for optimism as he looks forward to a potential final appearance by his team. He added: "Okay, Hibs will be favourites but remember they are only three points above ourselves and Falkirk in the league and you have seen what happened to them against Inverness at the weekend so nothing is guaranteed. So the players will never get a better chance and you've got to make them aware of that. We have stressed to them not to let the semi-final pass them by. You've got to be up for it because it's usually about who wants it more on the night."
Ger Harley (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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