PROUD Auchinleck Talbot boss Tommy Sloan has heaped praise on his team for digging out what he said could be a “vital victory in their quest to retain the McBookie Premiership title.

A dramatic last gasp injury-time goal from Neil McPherson, his first goal for the club, saw 10-man Talbot edge out Rossvale 2-1 away and keeps them 13 points behind leaders Kilwinning Rangers with eight games in hand.

The only downside was the red-carding of Kieran Healy, who is now suspended for Saturday’s home clash with Rutherglen Glencairn.

He was red-carded for retaliation after being the victim of a bad tackle from Liam McGonigle, who was also sent off.

Sloan said: “That was a vital victory for us and I was delighted with the players as they showed great spirit and it was great to see Neil scoring.

“You couldn’t argue with Kieran’s red card was it was a bad challenge but he shouldn’t have reacted. It’s a blow he’s now suspended. That could be a vital point for us.”

The Rutherglen match is followed next Tuesday, February 11 with a trip to Townhead Park to play Cumnock in what is the first full game to be played by the two teams under floodlights at the ground.

Sloan said: “We must focus on the Rutherglen game, they are fighting for their lives and there are no easy games in this league.

“Cumnock will be well up for the match there and derbies are always tough but we must aim to continue our good run of form.”

Meanwhile Talbot will not be joining Buffs in considering a breakaway from Junior Football.

Secretary Henry Dumigan said in a statement: “Following the decision of the Lowland League and East of Scotland League not to support the recommendations of the Pyramid Working Group, this would have allowed the Scottish Junior FA to Join the Pyramid Systemm Auchinleck Talbot FC wish to confirm that we will support the SJFA in their efforts to find a solution to this matter Auchinleck Talbot will continue to work towards achieving Club Licensing in preparation for any possible future changes to the structure of our game.”