DUNBAR United boss Geoff Jones hopes that his player will “be brave” as they push for promotion from the South Division.
The Seasiders are currently in third place in the league, but have three games in hand on Pumpherston Juniors, who occupy second spot, and two on leaders Blackburn United, and have promotion in their own hands.
Jones, who took over at New Countess Park in 2014, told Courier Sport he was “delighted” with the players’ performances so far this season.
He said: “Dunbar United haven’t been involved in a promotion race for a very long time, meaning the norm at this stage is meaningless games and demotivated players.
“This is exciting for the club, players and supporters.
“Every game is a cup final for us.”
Jones’ side face seventh-place Edinburgh United on Saturday, and Jones is under no illusions as to the task at hand.
He added: “Due to our Scottish [Junior] Cup run, we have been playing catch-up with the top two since October.
“In early January we were 12 points behind after a couple of postponements and a bad defeat to Pumpherston.
“That has meant we have been playing must-win games every week under quite significant pressure, and the players have coped admirably with that pressure – I can’t speak highly enough of them for that.
“Saturday will be no different; Edinburgh are much-improved since John O’Hara took over, they are well-organised and drew with Blackburn a few weeks back.
“They are still in the Fife and Lothians Cup as well, so have much to play for and we will need to be at our best if we want to win.”
Former striker Jones, who took the Seasiders job after finishing his playing days with county rivals Haddington Athletic, was also pleased with the manner of Saturday’s 7-1 thrashing of Kirkcaldy YM (see report left).
He added: “The last few weeks we have played very well after a shaky performance at home to Craigroyston and we need to keep that standard going.
“Kirkcaldy are not a bad team but we really did turn them over on Saturday, as we started the game so well and they couldn’t recover.
“It helped our goal difference, which may be crucial come the end of the season – it really is that tight at the top.”
Jones also told Courier Sport he believes a record points tally will be required if they are to emulate the achievements of Haddington Athletic and Tranent Juniors by earning promotion to the East Premier League.
He added: “I don’t expect anything other than for my players to give their best and be brave, which they have done all season.
“I think the players deserve to go up for their sheer commitment and attitude this season – but I’m sure Pumpherston, Blackburn and Lochgelly would say the same.”
The Seasiders boss urged caution ahead of the season’s run-in, adding: “It’s one game at a time, we are looking no further than that.”