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Daily Record
Daily Record
Andy McGilvray

East Kilbride had to dig deep for Tranent win, says boss Kevin Rutkiewicz

Kevin Rutkiewicz says East Kilbride were forced to dig deep for their 3-2 win over Tranent on Saturday, and warned that they will need to get used to that in the Lowland League.

Kilby eventually won the game but it wasn’t a quiet start to the new season.

Bob McHugh had a 10th-minute penalty saved, before Tranent took the lead through a free-kick in 56 minutes.

McHugh levelled from a corner three minutes later, and a similar set-piece saw Ronan Hughes put Kilby ahead in 69 minutes.

Jonny Page bulleted in a header from a corner to put Kilby 3-1 in front, before Tranent pulled a goal back in 84 minutes.

But the visitors were made to sweat for their win when captain Gary Miller was red-carded for violent conduct.

Rutkiewicz didn’t feel that it was a dirty game, but was pleased to take three points.

East Kilbride boss Kevin Rutkiewicz was pleased with the win (Gary Peacock)

He said: “It was a proper game of football, and it’s what we’ve been needing as a group.

“Saturday really did mean something, this is it now, and I’m delighted that we’re into it, and that three new signings scored.

“It’s monkeys off backs, and we’ve peeled the plaster off.

“All the boys now know how difficult this is going to be.”

Rutkiewicz added: “It was a terrific result and we’ve dug it out, but if we had scored in the first half we could have been out of sight.

“We had Ronan Hughes in a really good position within 90 seconds, and the penalty... if you do score a couple of goals there it’s 4-1 by the time we’re sweating.

“Tranent are a good team, they’ve been together for two or three seasons, against a team that’s played together for six weeks.

“I thought we were a wee bit fragmented, but we found a way.

Captain Gary Miller was sent off with three minutes left (Gary Peacock)

“Sometimes it’s better to win a game like that when you’re a new group – grinding it out, working together, as opposed to going into another game and winning comfortably.

“That’s really good for team spirit and hopefully it shows in the coming weeks.”

Follow Lanarkshire Live Sport on Twitter via @LanLiveSport, like us on Facebook or find us on Instagram for the latest sports news, pictures and video.

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