Dumbarton manager Stevie Farrell insists he isn’t going anywhere after his side crashed out of the play-offs against Annan Athletic.

Sons were thumped 6-0 at Galabank last Tuesday, all but booking Annan’s spot in the final after just 90 minutes of football.

The second leg had the aura of a pre-season friendly about it as it was played out in front of a tiny crowd at the Dumbarton Football Stadium of 296, which is the lowest attendance at The Rock for a league or play-off game since 2008.

A goalless draw confirmed Annan’s spot in the final with a large section of the Sons fans that did attend voicing their displeasure towards Farrell before and after the match.

Speaking post-match on Saturday, the Sons boss said: “Fans are entitled to their opinion and I don’t have any issue with that. I’ve never reacted to pats on the back and I’ve never reacted to getting stabbed in the back.

“The fans are entitled to their opinion and I am entitled to mine, and this club has had a great season this season.

“You would have thought that was a manager walking off the pitch that’s sitting in the bottom two in the league.

“The players are coming off the pitch hearing that reaction and I said to them that it isn’t about them, it’s about me. They have had a brilliant season and people forget that.

“We have not been out of the top two from the first week of the season until the last week.

“There’s something bigger with Stevie Farrell at this club and I don’t know what it is, you would need to ask those that are giving me it. Even before the playoffs, the negativity was there towards me.

“We went on a seven-game winning run and then went to Stirling Albion and got beat and I was getting the same reaction coming off the pitch so there’s something bigger than that. I don’t know what it is but I’ve never reacted and I won’t lose one bit of sleep over it.

“I’ve got a message and a clear message; I’m here and I’m going to build on this year.

“This has been a good year and we need to go one better next season.”

Chances were few and far between for much of the afternoon with Finlay Gray having Dumbarton’s first effort when he cut in from the right but dragged his shot wide and the division’s top goal scorer Tommy Goss nodded over the bar for Annan.

He was nearly in again on 13 minutes but Brett Long raced off his line sharply to deny him and prevent the towering striker from getting a shot away.

At the other end, Gregor Buchanan headed the ball across goal from a corner and into the path of Declan Byrne however he couldn’t help the ball into the net in a busy penalty area and Ryan Blair had a low free-kick well-held by Greg Fleming.

In the second half, Sons failed to do much in front of goal until the closing quarter of an hour when substitute Russell McLean was unfortunate to see his header cleared off the line and Buchanan had an acrobatic volley gathered by Fleming.

The Annan shotstopper was called into action again with the last notable moment of the tie as he got across his line quickly to tip over David Wilson’s free-kick.

Annan will now meet Clyde in the final with a spot in next season's cinch League One the reward for the winner of the two-legged tie.

The Sons boss is set to meet with his out-of-contract players this evening [Monday] to discuss deals for the 2023/24 campaign, although he does already have a large number of those from this season signed up as well as two pre-contracts from other clubs signed.

Farrell added: “I’ll meet with the players on Monday night so there will be some sort of announcement on Tuesday in terms of our own squad.

“We’re happy that we’ve got a large majority of our own squad tied up.

“They have signed extensions because they want to be at this club and play for this club and management team and it’s about us now trying to build on that and get those wee short percentages to take us from second to first.”

Elsewhere, Vale of Leven moved six points clear of the relegation zone as they picked up four points this week.

Brian Brown’s side travelled to Newmains United on Wednesday and came from behind to secure a 2-1 win thanks to goals from Greg Thackery and Ryan Hynes.

That was followed up with a draw against Lugar Boswell Thistle on Saturday as Greg Ross equalised for the visitors at Rosebank Park.

Four games remain for the Cheaper Insurance Direct Stadium side, the first of which takes place at home against Ardrossan Winton Rovers on Wednesday evening.

That’s followed up with a trip to Craighead Park on Saturday where Lesmahagow awaits.

Fixtures against East Kilbride Thistle and Irvine Victoria round off Vale’s season.