Formartine United manager Paul Lawson has urged his players to embrace the challenge of taking on Premiership side Motherwell in the Scottish Cup this weekend.
The North Lodge Park men host the two-time Scottish Cup winners in the third round on Saturday.
Lawson’s side are one of three Highland League sides left in the competition with Hearts’ conquerors Brora hosting Stranraer, while Fraserburgh welcome Montrose.
After yesterday’s confirmation that the Highland League season won’t be restarted, Saturday’s Scottish Cup tie in Pitmedden would be Formartine’s last game of the campaign – unless they can follow Brora’s lead and stun Graeme Alexander’s Well.
Lawson, whose side earned their spot in the third round with a penalty shootout triumph against Annan Athletic believes Brora’s heroics may have made life even tougher for his side this weekend.
— Scottish Cup (@ScottishCup) March 24, 2021
He said: “We want to give a good account of ourselves.
“It has been great to get back training and easy to see how much the boys have been enjoying it.
“The added incentive against Annan Athletic in the last round was to give ourselves another game to look forward to.
“We managed to do that which was great.
“With the uncertainty there has been over the league, it has been great to have the Scottish Cup games.
“Motherwell will come and be professional.
“We have to take inspiration from what Brora Rangers did.
“Our players must have that belief.
“The older players will want to show they can still perform and the younger ones want to show what they can do.
“We want to give a good account of ourselves.
“The Brora result shows anything can happen, but it might go the other way as Motherwell might take us a bit more seriously than they did.
“But if we play at the top of our game and Motherwell have an off day then you never know what can happen.”
Formartine faced top-flight opposition in the Scottish Cup in 2017 when they were beaten 4-0 by Partick Thistle at Firhill.
Lawson hopes it will be a closer contest this weekend against a Motherwell side that sit ninth in the Premiership with five games to go.
Lawson, a member of the Ross County side that reached the Scottish Cup final in 2010, added: “For clubs at our level the aim is always to get a glamour away tie or get them to your own ground and get a good crowd.
“That has been taken away, but it is still a big game for the club and a chance for the players to showcase what they can do.
“We have had some good ties over the last few years and good results against Forfar and Clyde.
“We felt we let ourselves down when we went to Partick Thistle (in a 4-0 loss in 2017). We didn’t play at all, which was disappointing.
“At Ross County, we did so well to get to the cup final, but we didn’t turn up on the day.
“From the players’ point of view, we want to make sure we don’t let ourselves down.
“We have to show our confidence as well as showing Motherwell the respect they deserve.”