‘Don’t let our season filter out’ warns Whitby boss

Whitby Town keeper Shane Bland fists the ball away under pressure from the Buxton attack'picture: Brian Murfield
Whitby Town keeper Shane Bland fists the ball away under pressure from the Buxton attack'picture: Brian Murfield

Whitby Town are chasing their first win of 2015 and their first double of the season when Rushall Olympic visit the Turnbull Ground on Saturday (Jan 31).

The West Midlands outfit were put to the sword mercilessly by Darren Williams’ men last October as Steven Snaith struck twice and Lee Mason, Liam Shepherd and Craig Farrell also notched in a 5-1 thumping.

Despite Town’s show in the Walsall suburb, Williams warned: “It will be a tough game, everyone’s capable of beating anybody, it’s a good competition this year.

“We had a fantastic game down there, the lads worked extremely hard and it ended up as a great result for us.

“It’s important to get back to winning ways,” he added.

Since defeating North East rivals Blyth Spartans on December 28, Town lost at play-off chasing Workington, held third-placed Ilkeston and lost out 1-0 to Buxton, who are second, last weekend.

“I don’t want the season to filter out,” Williams added.

“There’s a lot of points still to play for.”

The former Sunderland star also revealed he might be back on the field himself for Saturday’s clash after dropping to the bench for the Buxton game.

He said: “I felt a bit weary. I’d come off with my calf at Ilkeston and it was still a bit sore. I also took a knock on my knee during that game.

“I just felt a little under par and didn’t know if I’d be one man less for the team and would I be able to get around as much as at Ilkeston.

“It was maybe a decision I shouldn’t have made. I maybe should’ve listened more and played the game.”

Williams, who also represented FA Cup giant-killers Bradford City, admitted assistant Dave Campbell had encouraged him to play too, though it’s a difficult balance between on and off pitch priorities.

“I love playing and love being involved, but find it difficult to manage while out there,” he told the Whitby Gazette.

“I’ve got Dave Campbell (in the dugout), who’s got great experience and Lee Bullock, with experience at all levels, and Dennis Wheeler.

“It’s food for thought for Saturday and probably something I will look at, maybe there will be at least one change.”

The Whitby chief also thanked last week’s 350+ crowd, Town’s second-highest of the season and asked them to return for the Rushall clash.

He added: “It was fantastic, great to see that. I said to (physio) Paul Scott as I looked around ‘this is the busiest it’s been for the warm-up’.

“You can feel it out there and it’s great that people want to see us.

“We want to put it right for them on Saturday. It’s a winnable game and hopefully we get a similar turn out, but this time we get three points for them.”

Kick-off is 3pm.