Peterhead captain Rory McAllister says they must prove their League Two title credentials by beating Edinburgh City tomorrow.
The second-placed Blue Toon face table-toppers Edinburgh at Balmoor and a win for the Buchan outfit will narrow the gap to one point.
McAllister and his team-mates also have two games in hand on City and the skipper knows the importance of picking up three points tomorrow to put them in a strong position.
The talismanic striker said: “From now until the end of the season every game is a cup final for us.
“If we win all our games we’ll win the league so that’s the way we have to look at it. It’s in our hands to finish top of the league and hopefully we can do that.
“If we win this game it puts us in a good position and it means the pressure is more on them than it is on us. If we don’t win tomorrow the pressure will be on us.
“If we win the game it means they have to go and win a lot of games because the ball would be in our court to go top of the league.
“I think the boys we have are good enough to win the league and we’re honest enough to know that these are the games where you have to step up and prove you’re good enough.
“People can say we’re the best team in the league, but this is a situation where we have to go and show that we are the best team.”
From two previous meetings with Edinburgh this term, Peterhead have only taken one point – that’s a statistic McAllister wants to improve, but he knows it won’t be easy against City.
He added: “We’ve played them twice already; we’ve lost and we’ve drawn. I thought we should maybe have beaten them down at Ainslie Park when we drew 1-1.
“But even when we played them at home we had a few chances to take something from the game.
“It will be a tough game and they keep churning out results so we expect it to be difficult.
“We had a wee blip against Annan last Saturday week and lost 3-0, but we just need to keep playing the way we have been before that and hopefully get a result.”
McAllister hopes to play a big part in tomorrow’s game after battling to overcome back problems that have plagued him in 2019. The 31-year-old said: “I think I’m over the worst of it. I’m not completely right, but it’s OK.
“I’ve trained since Annan and I trained on Saturday with Cove and on Monday with Cove because, with the weather and everything, it’s been better for the Aberdeen boys to be training more locally.
“I do put strain on my back with my job as a plumber because I’m usually bent over a boiler or a sink or something. It’s one of these things and you have to manage it as best you can.”
McAllister has scored 12 goals this season, but he’s not entirely happy with that total.
“If I look back, I should have scored a few more,” he said.
“But the team is still competing at the top of the league, which is the most important thing. I’m sure the goals will come – 12 is all right, but not quite as good as normal. As long as the team keep winning I’m not too fussed about it.
“I still have a lot to contribute to the team and the goals will come.
“I also feel I’m contributing in other ways outside just scoring so it can even itself out, although it’s always good to score.”