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Buckie Thistle and Brechin City get ready to clash in vital Highland League clash at Victoria Park

By Craig Christie

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The Highland League title race won’t be decided tonight, but the only fixture being played is of huge importance.

Buckie played Brechin at Victoria Park in the final game of last season. Picture: Beth Taylor
Buckie played Brechin at Victoria Park in the final game of last season. Picture: Beth Taylor

In a rematch of last season’s championship decider on the final day, Buckie Thistle play host to champions and current leaders Brechin City.

Brechin grabbed the league trophy in dramatic fashion at Victoria Park last April. With Buckie needing just a draw to claim the title and the game still goalless in the closing stages, City struck twice at the death to snatch glory.

Graeme Stewart’s Jags gained a measure of revenge with a late winner to defeat Brechin 3-2 at Glebe Park on February 17 - that result made Buckie favourites to win this year’s league in some eyes.

And while Stewart’s men have also defeated fellow challengers Fraserburgh, Banks O’ Dee and Formartine United in recent weeks, it has been their performances against some of the league’s lesser lights which have cost them valuable points.

Current Highland League table
Current Highland League table

Saturday’s shock 3-1 loss at Wick Academy was Buckie’s third defeat against a bottom-six side in their last seven league outings.

They also lost 3-2 at home to second-bottom Clach on February 24, and 2-1 at Lossiemouth on March 9.

Another loss to the league leaders would put Jags 13 points adrift with just two games in hand, surely spelling the end of their championship bid.

However, a Buckie success would close the gap to just seven points and give Stewart’s side a great chance of taking the trophy from City’s grasp.

Brechin are unbeaten since losing at home to Buckie, with four wins and draws against Banks O’ Dee and Forres Mechanics.

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