King’s Lynn Town getting ready for a critical period of fixtures
- Credit: Matthew Usher
Gary Setchell is under no illusions about just how vital the next seven days are for King's Lynn Town.
The Linnets host Witton Albion this afternoon, travel to Halesowen Town for more league action on Tuesday and entertain Lancaster City in the FA Cup third qualifying round on Saturday.
Two Evo-Stik Premier Division victories could move Setchell's side into the top six while a couple of losses could see them plummet perilously close to the basement.
So Lynn's boss insists he's fully aware that the next few days could be critical in defining the nature of his troops' season. Setchell said: 'This is the most important week we've had at Lynn for quite a while if I'm being honest.
'The FA Cup's been put to bed for the next week. By the time we play in it again we'll possibly be talking about whether we're in or around the top six or in and around the bottom six. I don't really have to comment any more than that about just how important our next two league matches are.'
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Just six points separate Ilkeston in fourth and Marine in 20th, such is the ridiculously tight nature of the Northern Premier League. Despite a fine start, Lynn have slipped to 14th after winning just twice in their last five matches – victories which came in the FA Cup.
A 3-0 triumph today, like the scoreline they beat Witton by at The Walks last term, would certainly help Setchell and his players start looking upwards rather than nervously over their shoulders.
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The return of Henry Eze, Jackson Ramm and David Bridges – who all missed Saturday's heroic 1-0 FA Cup win over higher-level Hednesford Town – has provided a boost for a Lynn squad which was down to the bare bones this time last weekend. Eze's return means centre-back Ryan Fryatt will have the afternoon off to let his latest head wound heal following a nasty clash with an opponent last time out.
'You've got to think about next week in the sense of Ryan,' said Setchell of the defender who came off 66 minutes into his team's shock win against the Pitmen.
'If he cuts his head open again then he might not be able to play next week when Henry's cup tied. It makes sense to let his wound heal and play Henry who couldn't play against Hednesford. It's a common sense decision really.'
Ross Watson (heel) and Shaun Stocker (knee) were two of the star performers during a memorable weekend at The Walks just seven days ago. Both are rated as injury doubts going into today's clash. Witton arrive with their third manager of a chaotic season but Setchell is not too worried about the impact Tony Sullivan may have during his maiden match in charge.
Lynn's boss added: 'We'll concentrate on what we're doing. I'm sure their manager will be passing on new ideas and looking to get a good result under his belt in his first game.
'He'll want to get off to a good start but we will worry about what King's Lynn are doing and focus on ourselves. There's a lot more competition for places this week and I'm happy to have it.'