Dereham Town boss Matt Henman happy with squad for title run-in
The leading protagonists in the Premier Division title race are in action tonight – with Matt Henman insisting his Dereham Town side can meet all the challenges ahead.
The Magpies head for Haverhill, while second-placed Wisbech Town entertain Wodbridge and third-placed Gorleston take on Brantham, who are fourth, at Emerald Park.
Henman made changes for the visit of Walsham-le-Willows on Saturday and the Magpies came out 5-0 winners – and Henman is happy he has a near fully-fit squad to contest the leaders' remaining seven games.
'Our important players can always perform in the important games and as a result we were in a position where we can rest our players and it is was nice to do that, considering we have some very tough games to come,' said Henman. 'However, on Tuesday we will have Adam Smith and Scott Roberts back, so with the exception of Gary Starling, who is ruled out for the rest of the season, we are pretty much fully fit going into the last seven games.'
Henman praised his side's ability to play different styles of football after seeing off Walsham, just four days after beating Ely City 2-1 on a very different surface.
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'Recently we have shown that we are able to play different styles of football dependant on the conditions we are playing in and the style of football the opposition we are playing,' Henman said. 'Our pitch is a good surface and we are used to playing on it. But on Tuesday we are playing on a new pitch at Haverhill so we may well need a different style of football, but because of the quality these lads have shown recently like Ely on Tuesday, I'm sure we can go there and play well.'
Henman also hinted that his side may appeal the charge of failing to control their players during last Tuesday's victory over Ely. Both teams were taken off by the ref for 20 minutes after a brawl between dismissed pair Magpies' Shaun Bammant and Darren Coe escalated.
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'Shaun has received the standard charge for being sent off and I feel he is unlucky considering he received a lot of provocation,' said Henman. 'But as a club we have been charged with failing to control our players.
'Quite frankly, I am not sure what more we could have done. The dug-outs were on the opposing side of the pitch and really the players that went over tried to help calm the situation down.
'So I think we might be appealing as it is not really our responsibility to deal with sent off players once they have left the field the play. '
Two of the relegation battlers are in action, and with only two teams likely to be relegated, second-from-bottom Thetford will be desperate to get something from Ely City.
Diss Town are at home to Mildenhall - the original fixture last month was abandoned after 54 minutes because of heavy snow with the visitors leading 1-0 at the time.
In the First Division, Fakenham are at home to Swaffham while Great Yarmouth Town entertain Ipswich Wanderers.