Captain’s View: Richard Bunting’s weekly look inside The Walks
- Credit: Matthew Usher
With the hectic Christmas a New Year schedule done all seems very quiet in the build up to the massive FA Trophy game against Southport at The Walks on Saturday.
With important league matches out of the way everyone is looking ahead to the last-16 tie. It's been such an achievement for everyone involved with the club to have progressed as far as we have and I for one don't want our run to end. When I say everyone by the way that's what I mean.
All the players that have been involved have played a part. The gaffer (Gary Setchell), Neil (Fryatt, assistant) and Ross (McNeil, first-team coach) who prepare us for the games. The chairman (Buster Chapman) has provided the lads with everything we need and finally the support we have received from our fans has given us that extra bit of belief we needed to produce the results we have done in the competition.
We have played a huge five rounds so far beating teams from every step that are involved in the competition and as the rounds have gone on we have always said this is our biggest test. Saturday will be no different.
Southport will be our toughest challenge, no question about it, but with the confidence we have taken from the Telford game nobody within our changing room has any doubts that the upsets are not over yet.
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The Blue Square Premier side are the first team we have faced in this cup who are a mix of part time and full time players so fitness levels will be important, something they will have over us. But we will have our supporters driving us on.
As well as the belief I've mentioned the vocal support we have received also gives everyone that extra bit of energy that enables us to make that final run or one more tackle. This is a big game for us all and we are all in it together. Come Saturday we need to be as one and if our dream can continue.
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Back to matches played since my last column, we hosted second-placed Stamford on New Year's Day. I mentioned before it wasn't a case of a must-win game but we all knew it was a big one for us. Given our run in the league we knew it would give us a tremendous platform going into 2013 if we could get three points.
It was a typical top of the league clash. Two sides giving there all for a victory. The first half was fairly even I thought with chances few and far between. We were all disappointed to concede so early into the second half.
But all credit to the boys; we never know when we are beaten. Custard (Shane Tolley) has come in and been different class for us. He has the same mentality as all the boys who fight until the final whistle and he deserved both of his goals.
The second, which proved to be the winner, was typical of the type of player he is. He always plays on the shoulder of the last defender and when the ball was played over the top he was first to react. His finish was clinical.
Scoring late goals gives everyone such a buzz and we have made a habit of doing it this season. The 2-1 triumph could prove to be a vital win come the end of the campaign.
On Saturday, the lads travelled to Norwich to play in the Norfolk Senior Cup. The gaffer gave myself, Dunks (Dunkley) and Gullers (Gulliver) the day off. It's important to get rest into players and its down to the gaffer to decide which ones he thinks need it. As the senior players in the squad it was nice to have a break as we have played a lot of games in the first half of the season. With a bit more luck hopefully the second half can be just as busy.
The lads lost 6-3, which is a shame, as we want to win and do well in every game we play.
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