• May 2024
    May 2024

    Killie Finish 4th & Make the Europa League Qualifiers

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Killie FC

May 2024


May 2024

Joe Sees Red At Ibrox!

Four games remain in Killie's Euro quest for next season. To start May the the season-ending SPFL nominations came out, with Derek McInnes up for Manager of the Year & David Watson Young Player of the Year awards. No Killie players were named to the "Team of the Season". 

Up in Glasgow a chaotic opening 25 minutes, saw Kilie take the lead through a James Tavernier own-goal at Ibrox to start May. Killie from their only foray into the Rangers box. A deep, seemingly unthreatening, cross was knocked back towards goal by Matty Kennedy, with the ball hitting Tavernier's arm and bouncing in slow-motion into the goal. Then Rangers captain missed from the penalty spot after Joe Wright had handled on the line. Wright was red-carded for the infringement. Will Dennis made a great save diving to his right to save the spot-kick.  Silva then scored on the brink of half-time to level, Ben Davies' rebound put them ahead, before Tom Lawrence and John Souttar added in extra-time to wrap the game up in a score-line that flattered the hosts.  Bad news for Brad Lyons as he limped out of the Rangers match with a season-ending injury. 

Many Killie fans were wondering "how come ?".... Joe got an Ibrox red-card, when Alistair Johnston of Celtic back in December fortuitously blocked the ball from a sure-fire Ndaba goal with his upper left arm and VAR didn't even review it!

David Watson, who is under contract until 2026, became the first non-old Firm player to win the PFA young player prize since Andy Robertson in 2014. Del said " I think we should expect speculation about Davie, we should expect clubs to be more than aware of him, bigger clubs than us. We would be surprised if there wasn't. If there are offers for him, it is something we would have to look at, but we don't want to lose him".


Killie Clinch 4th After Victory In Paisley is Secured!

The head to head match-up with the Buddies could confirm a 4th place finish for Killie, and a Europa League qualifiers  place (with a Europa Conference safety net place). A 0-1 victory was secured in front of 2,000+ killie fans in Paisley with Kyle Vassell belting in the games only goal with assists going to Marley & Danny. Will Dennis , Andy Deas (no Joe after his Ibrox red-card) & Stuart Findlay all shone in defence for Ayrshire's finest!

In Killie's final home game of the season Celtic sealed a 12th Scottish Premiership title in 13 seasons by beating Killie 5-0 in arguably their best display of the season. Brendan Rodgers' side travelled to Rugby Park, where they had lost on their previous two visits, knowing a point in their penultimate league fixture would extend their top-flight dominance. Two goals inside the opening 12 minutes eliminated any fears of a third straight defeat in Ayrshire. Killie were already guaranteed fourth spot, and were denied a Danny Armstrong consolation at four down, with Marley Watkins judged to be offside by the VAR in the build-up., Additionally Del pointed out that...“The first goal should have been pulled back and (referee) Don Robertson apologised at half-time. He said it wasn’t a foul but he knew it was a head knock and he should have stopped the game. It’s poor from him because he’s a good official. They didn’t need a helping hand but they got one !"

One thing is for sure Rugby Park is truly ours again when we host the Old Firm . The fans were fantastic right to the end, "Stand up if you love Killie" when the 4th hit the back of net, then  "Killie Till I Die" getting belted out providing an atmosphere that was brilliant right till the end considering the circumstances.

Also of note was that either the Celtic (H) match or Dundee (A) match was Rory McKenzie's 400th appearance for the club.

Prior to the Dundee (A) finale Derek McInnes was been named Scottish Premiership Glen’s Manager of the Season for 2023/24. Under his leadership, Killie secured fourth place in this season's top flight and earned a place in the Europa League qualifiers for 2024/25.

Derek McInnes said: "I am delighted to accept this award, like any individual award there is a whole support team that's played their part in it. Having brilliant staff, I am recognising the effort from all of them, and the efforts of the players. The club is working as one and everyone is contributing. When positive results play out on the pitch and individual awards get given, it's indicative of the club doing a lot of things right off the pitch."

Scottish Football Writers Association Awards

For a fourth time in season 2023-24, Dundee and Killie couldn’t be separated as they both finished successful seasons with a 1-1 draw at Dens Park. After a slow start, Killie took the lead through Gary Mackay-Steven - who was making his first start on possibly his final appearance for the club. Dundee hit back when Scott Tiffoney sprung the offside trap and played Luke McCowan in, with the deputising captain firing in. The effort was initially disallowed but VAR intervened to award the goal. Killie hit the bar twice in the second-half and had Robbie Deas sent off for a second yellow, while McCowan missed a penalty to seal a victory for Dundee in the 88th minute.

For the record Killie finish up with the perfect "trifecta" on VAR calls...

  • Offside Goal over-turned to Dundee
  • Red-card review for mistaken identity (Robbie Deas sent off!)
  • Penalty call confirmed by VAR to Dundee.

With the playing season now over, it was time for "Awards Season". Killie "Player of the Year" (and top goal-scorer) was Marley Watkins. "Player's Player of the Season" went to Lewis Mayo, along with David Watson picking up yet another "Young Player of the Season" award. "Signing of the Year" went to Matty Kennedy. 

Teenager Bobby Wales  is voted Alloa Athletic's "Player of the Year" having scored 12 goals (along with 4 assists)  in 25 appearances for the Wasps. 

The Latest "Killie Hall of Fame" inductees were also announced: Gus MacPherson, Mark "Mavis" Reilly and the late Tommy Burns.

Loanee's Corrie Ndaba (Ipswich Town) , Stuart Findlay (Oxford Utd) Tom Davies (Cardiff City),  James Balagizii (Liverpool), Kevin van Veen (FC Groningen) & Will Dennis (Bournemouth)  see their Killie loan deals all expire as they return to their respective parent clubs. 

Departing upon completion of their contracts: Jack Sanders, Kerr McInroy, Aaron Quigg, & Steven Warnock.

Still in discussion with the club: Liam Polworth, Marley Watkins, Gary Mackay-Steven, Greg Stewart, Innes Cameron, Kieran O’Hara.

Remaining under contract: Aidan Glavin, Ethan Brown, Ethan Mersey, Ben Brannan, Lewis Mayo, Joe Wright, Robbie Deas, Liam Donnelly, Rory McKenzie, David Watson, Brad Lyons, Kyle Magennis, Danny Armstrong, Fraser Murray, Matty Kennedy, Kian Leslie, Aaron Brown, Kyle Vassell, Bobby Wales.

Before the end of May Derek McInnes agrees new terms with the Rugby Park club to extend his stay in Ayrshire by a further year until the summer of 2027.

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