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‘Whole club is looking forward to new challenge’ – Rice

By Nickolas McInally – 29th July

Accies boss Brian Rice has revealed everyone involved with the Lanarkshire club is desperate to get the league campaign as the side enter their final preparations for their Championship opener against Raith Rovers. 

Speaking ahead of the match Rice said:We are all looking forward to the challenge that is for sure, in every training session you can see the lads are right on it and there is a determination to start the league campaign off strongly. 

“That isn’t just from the players, the board are the same and having the fans back has been fantastic for us. Since that first game against Edinburgh City, they have been there to support us and made it clear that we are fighting together to get this club back into the Premiership.” 

Despite the enthusiasm Rice has called on his players to rise to the challenge from the very first match. 

He said: “This is perhaps unfamiliar territory for some of the lads here, we are now expected to be fighting at the top end of the table and to do that you need to be playing well and scoring goals.

“That is now the challenge for players to take games by the scruff of the neck and make things happen, but I think as a football player that is a challenge you should enjoy. The Championship is a very difficult league we know that, and we know if we want to be at the correct end then we need to hit the ground running on Saturday.”

The Accies Head Coach has revealed the club are still in negotiations with several signing targets as he looks to improve his squad. 

He said: “Myself and the board have been working flat out to get players in. I have always said if a player was available that improves our squad, then we will look to get them in. We are in discussions with three or four players and are hoping to get some deals done as soon as possible.”

As well as potential fresh faces Rice confirmed the squad has been boosted with several key players returning from injury. 

He said: “We have a few players who have trained this week. David Templeton and Scott McMann have had a week’s full training for the first time this season, that undoubtedly will strengthen the squad, but they probably aren’t ready to play a full match yet. 

“With these lads being out for so long and not really having a proper pre-season we have to be careful with them when we get them back to full fitness.

“On top of those we have Andy Ryan back involved after being ruled out with a covid situation.”

Accies kick-off their Championship campaign with an away match against Raith Rovers this Saturday. Kick-off 3PM

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