Peterhead boss Jim McInally hopes Rory McAllister’s vital contribution to their weekend win over Clyde will help rejuvenate his captain.
The Blue Toon skipper came off the bench against the Bully Wee on Saturday and created the crucial second goal for Scott Brown.
McAllister started on the bench at the weekend as a result of an ankle problem that has plagued him for most of the season.
McInally believes the 32-year-old’s confidence has also been dented this term because he has only netted four goals.
But the Buchan boss hopes McAllister will be encouraged by his impressive cameo against Clyde.
McInally said: “It was brilliant that Rory came on and played such a big part in the second goal.
“I spoke to Rory before the game and he was going to be on the bench, but with his ankle troubling him I asked if he wanted to be left out of the squad for a couple of weeks.
“But he said he wanted to stay involved and try to contribute and I’m glad it paid off for him when he came on. The work for the second goal was just a touch of class that we’re so used to seeing from Rory.”
McInally admits the way Peterhead have played this term has meant McAllister hasn’t had as many chances as in previous campaigns.
Scotland’s longest-serving manager added: “The way we’re playing doesn’t really help him so much in terms of giving him chances.
“A lot of our goals this season have come from the middle of the park and he’s provided quite a few chances for midfielders this season.
“Rory hasn’t missed a lot of chances this season, but I think what’s frustrating him is half chances when he gets a wee bit of space from a defender, he hasn’t managed to get a shot away and the defender has recovered.
“Those have been little situations where in the past he’s maybe ended up with a goal out of nothing, but that hasn’t happened and I think it’s frustrating him.
“But something I have noticed is that, with him being frustrated, he’s taking himself away from the box trying to get on the ball when, really, he should stay in the box because that’s where he’s most likely to get goals.”
Derek Lyle returned to Peterhead’s starting line-up after illness on Saturday and got the opener against Clyde.
McInally was pleased to see the 38-year-old notch his fourth goal of the season.
He said: “Derek wasn’t well last week and was tiring after about an hour on Saturday, but I was delighted he scored.
“Derek’s such a good professional and is a great example to the rest of the squad.”