AS one highly rated striker departs Clackmannanshire, another is back and can't wait to delight Wee County fans once again. 

Ross Crawford is determined to make up for lost time after returning to "ambitious" Sauchie Juniors on a permanent deal from League Two side Brechin City. 

The forward, who finished as the Reds' top goalscorer in the 2018/19 season before departing for the Angus outfit, spent the latter part of last season on loan at Beechwood Park, only for his second spell to be cut short by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

READ MORE: Ross Crawford out to repay Sauchie's show of faith

It's a move Fraser Duncan has been trying to finalise for months and now he's back Crawford is sure the sky is the limit at Sauchie. 

"It's a club with ambition and you look around and see teams in our league are all showing ambition," Crawford, 21, told Advertiser Sport. "They are all trying to strive to improve to get to where they want to go. 

"It'll be interesting to see how it goes in the next few years and how things will pan out. There's a big opportunity for clubs to push on and go places. 

"There's more of a pool now for players to come down and work their way up with an ambitious club. The future is bright."

He added: "I am delighted and it was a bit up in the air at the start of it. I didn't really know what I was going to do or where I was going to go.

"It was more of me taking my time and seeing where it would go. I know I needed to make my mind up soon, or else I would have nothing.

"Always in the back of my head Sauchie was the place I wanted to go just because of how they've been with me during my spells there.

"I enjoyed the end of last season even although it was only a short period of time. You can see what Fras is trying to do and where we are trying to go.

"You can also see the ambition and what the club is all about in what they've been doing at the ground during the last few months.

"It's going to look brilliant when it's all done and I can't wait to go." 

It's still unknown when Sauchie will return to action with no information as of yet being passed onto the club by East of Scotland bosses, who recently criticised the Scottish FA for not including the lower leagues in plans. 

Alloa and Hillfoots Advertiser: Sauchie boss Fraser Duncan has had his eye on Crawford for months Sauchie boss Fraser Duncan has had his eye on Crawford for months

To keep himself busy, Crawford has continued to train on his own and, as of this week, he's back coaching one-to-one in Grangemouth as part of Jason Bolam's academy. 

"Football is the one thing you miss more than anything," he said. "It's alright now we can watch it but you just want to be back playing again. 

"Although, it's always important to remember there are more important things in life. 

"I've been doing some stuff myself and do a bit of coaching as well. I know what kind of drills to do to keep me fit and I've been doing some running, which has helped to keep me ticking over. 

"I've been keeping busy and looking after myself but I just want to get back and training with the team. It's been a while since I saw the boys and it felt like we had something to work towards. 

READ MORE: Ross Crawford seals return to Sauchie on permanent deal

"The coaching is really enjoyable and it keeps me going. When it's one-to-one you get a lot out of the sessions, too, and pick up a lot of stuff you wouldn't expect doing it.

"We're starting up this week and I'm looking forward to that. 

"I've learnt a lot since I started doing it and that includes stuff about my game and how other player's games are affected too."