Paisley Pirates face a big weekend, visiting Aberdeen Lynx on Saturday for the first leg of their Scottish Cup quarter-final tie before hosting Dundee Comets in the SNL the following day.
The Pirates are three points ahead of Lynx at the top the table with three games to play and Head Coach Ian Turley admitted it could be a pivotal weekend for the club.
“We’ll face the Lynx in front of a sell-out capacity crowd and that will justifiably give them confidence of taking a good lead with them to Braehead the following weekend.
“We’re not going there just to make up the numbers – we’re preparing as we always do and going there with the motto that winning is the only option.
“Both games against Aberdeen have been squeaky tight this season, with only a goal between us over two league games, so it’s likely to be another close run affair.
“We’ve got another tough looking match against the Dundee Comets on Sunday. They’ve really hit form in recent weeks and strengthened their side since we played them at their place back in September.
“They’ve got a goalscorer in John Dolan who’s shown he can cut it at Elite League level, which makes them very dangerous. They’ve plenty of other guys who are a handful as well.”
“We owe our fans a performance after the disappointment of losing to Edinburgh in front of them two weeks ago, so I’ll be reminding the players that we’ve a debt to repay to them.
“Only the highest level of performance and commitment on both nights will get us through the weekend still in the running for the competitions we’re still involved in, so I’ll be looking for nothing less than players who are willing to do whatever it takes through the games at the weekend.”
Aberdeen have run Paisley close in the league twice this season, drawing 3-3 on home ice before falling 4-3 on the road earlier this month.
Forward Jordan Leyden is confident the players have the drive to beat the Pirates and make up for that defeat.
“We’ve played them twice now and know what to expect,” he told the Aberdeen Evening Express.
“We know it’s going to be tough – we’re yet to beat them this season so have a bit of a point to prove.
“We’re all in this to win, whether it be cup or league. Last year was the team’s first taste of success so any opportunity we have to push for another, we’re going to take it.”
Aberdeen Lynx v Paisley Pirates (Cup)
Kilmarnock Storm v Edinburgh Capitals SNL
Moray Typhoons v Dundee Tigers
North Ayrshire Wild v Kilmarnock Storm (Cup)
Paisley Pirates v Dundee Comets
(Image permission: Al Goold Photo)