The end of the road

King's Lynn bid to end their Southern League, Premier Division odyssey on a high today at Swindon Supermarine.The Linnets' travel to Hunts Copse for a seventh and final consecutive away day ahead of the club's home league bow later this month after a delayed summer Main Stand revamp.

King's Lynn bid to end their Southern League, Premier Division odyssey on a high today at Swindon Supermarine.

The Linnets' travel to Hunts Copse for a seventh and final consecutive away day ahead of the club's home league bow later this month after a delayed summer Main Stand revamp.

Lynn have clocked up more than 1,000 miles on the road in the opening month but assistant boss Lee Glover is confident of clearing one final hurdle.

"Being prepared to scrap away from home is a massive part of getting promoted," he said. "You see it in the football league and the same applies in our league. I watched Bath a couple of times away last season and they threw their bodies on the line and did the ugly things well. If you do that side of the game you'll get your rewards. Our lads have done it so far."

Glover predicts another 'muck and nettles' battle for the pre-season title favourites.

"I prefer to turn that around and use it as a positive - why are we the team to beat?" he said. "It's because we are the biggest in the league and one of the promotion favourites. That means we must have good players and this must be a good club. If we didn't have lads who could cope with that then we'd have a problem. If anything the level of expectation is something we should thrive on."

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Glover insists Lynn have built a solid platform to kick on with only Rugby's late penalty winner wrecking their unbeaten start.

"I think we'd have taken one defeat in six games before the season," he said. "But the way it has panned out we wanted a little bit more. You look at the second half against Brackley and the minimum we should have got at Rugby was a point.

"We'd probably have taken the points total. We're happy with that, but we want to push on now. The club has looked after the players with good hotels and travelling overnight and I think the lads have gone out on the pitch and tried to repay that."

Regular keeper Scott Howie misses today's game because of a family commitment. Youngster Rob Murray will deputise, with Steven Norris providing emergency cover.

Greg Lake (thigh) and Steve Melton (foot) are injury doubts after picking up knocks in the midweek draw at Brackley. Goal scorer Joe Francis is in the squad after suffering mid concussion against the Saints. Lynn's management duo will also make a late decision on John Turner after the top scorer was rested for the trip to St James' with a niggling hamstring problem.

"Hopefully he'll be okay to play but what we won't do is risk losing players for a month or longer," said Glover. "You think you have a big squad but one or two injuries really tests that. Joe should be okay. I don't think it's too serious but he was very brave."

Central defender Greg Crane (ankle) is closing in on return to action after hobbling out of Lynn's opening day draw at Bashley.

"He might be involved again in two to three weeks," said Glover. "He's doing his strengthening work with the physio and sticking to his rehab. Charlie (Defty) has come in and been superb. If he can maintain that level of performance then we'll have a fight for places."

Marine boss Mark Collier insists his newly promoted side must raise their game.

"We've earned the right to play against these big sides and we can't be afraid of them," he said. "Yes, I would like to have their budget at my disposal but I believe in my players."

King's Lynn (from): Murray, West, Lake, Chapman, Warren, C Defty, Camm, Frew, Fisk, Melton, Nolan, J Defty, Turner, Smith, Francis, Bloomfield, Norris.