Arbroath boss Dick Campbell may have spent more than two decades as a coach and manager but there will be no-one inside Gayfield this afternoon more excited than him as the League 1 campaign kicks off.
The Red Lichties fans will witness the unveiling of the League 2 flag that their side secured as champions last season before the team line up against Gus MacPherson’s Queen’s Park.
There should be a bumper crowd inside the ground with Arbroath having experienced more than a 20% increase in season ticket sales this summer.
That has come on the back of winning promotion and undoubtedly on the recruitment campaign the manager has overseen with the addition of the likes of Danny Denholm, Tam O’Brien and Blair Yule as well the return of the prodigal Gavin Swankie to his old stamping ground.
However, Campbell insists that for all the off-field buzz, it is what happens on the pitch that ultimately matters and he knows his side are in for a challenging afternoon against the Spiders.
He said: “I think this will be my 23rd year as a coach and manager but the excitement at the start of a new league campaign is still the same.
“This is when the real ball comes out, so to speak.
“It will be a great day for the club with the League 2 flag being unveiled and hopefully there will be a big crowd inside Gayfield.
“I understand there has been a large increase in season ticket sales which shows there is a buzz about the club at the moment.
“However, it is vitally important that we do the business on the park.
“Gus MacPherson came all the way up to watch us play Ross County which shows the respect he has for Arbroath and we certainly have the same respect for Queen’s Park.
“They finished sixth in this league last season and were only a few points away from the play-offs so we know this will be a tough game.
“I have a full squad to choose from and I have some big decisions to make team-wise. Incredibly, there is a chance Ryan McCord, Bobby Linn and Mark Whatley might not even start the game.
“The five players I have brought in have really strengthened the squad.
“We have earned the right to be in this league and I would like nothing better than to start with a win at Gayfield.”