FROM LEAGUE 2 TO LEAGUE 1 - SP ‘TWO YEARS ON’
On the 4th December 2016, Stewart Petrie walked into Links Park with the Gable Endies propping up the League 2 table.
In just two short years the first time boss has created history, not only securing promotion for the Angus side, but doing it in style by winning the Ladbrokes League 2 last season in what was a nail biting, helicopter Saturday climax.
Fittingly, (as our photo shows) the gaffer got the chance to share the moment with former Montrose boss, Ian Stewart, the only other man in the Club’s 140 year history to bring a league trophy to Links Park, back in 1984-85.
Petrie’s impact in December 2016 was instant with a home win against Clyde that started a 4 game unbeaten run and a steady climb up the table that went on to secure a promotion play off place for the first time in 9 years.
Despite a semi-final defeat to the then League 1 side Peterhead, SP’s Blue and White Army sensed the tide was turning and by the time the Manager reached his first anniversary in post, the Gable Endies sat proudly at the top of the table.
With many long standing Club records falling along the way, Stewart saw his side go on to amass an incredible 40 points in the second half of last season, with only 2 defeats in 18 games, culminating in that historic draw at home to Elgin on April 28th, ensuring the Mighty Mo would start this campaign in League 1, the first time in 22 years.
Competing at this higher level, as expected has been tough, but Petrie and his backroom staff are certainly up for the challenge and they currently sit 7th in league, only 3 points off a play-off place.
Cup runs, noticeably sparse in recent years, have also been on the Managers radar and this season a win at Falkirk and narrow defeat at home to St Johnstone in the Betfred Cup, coupled with a third round Irn-Bru exit at Dingwall were all commendable performances against top class opposition.
However, having overcome Annan Athletic last week in a 7 goal, 3rd Round reply thriller, the Gable Endies now face the prospect of a mouth-watering, 4th Round Scottish Cup tie, their first for 8 years, at home to Dundee United on Saturday 19th January.
Impressive stats indeed for the first time boss who not only lifted the Ladbrokes League 2 Manager of the Year last term, but ensured himself of Legend status at the Club and who will undoubtedly be looking to build further on his sides success.