Belfast boys to lock horns in big match

Whitby's Leon Scott evades a challenge in Wednesday night's win over Hucknall'picture: Brian Murfield
Whitby's Leon Scott evades a challenge in Wednesday night's win over Hucknall'picture: Brian Murfield

AFTER Wednesday’s vital 1-0 win over relegation rivals Hucknall Town, Whitby Town host Nantwich, who they overtook with that midweek victory, in another ‘cup final’ on Saturday (2 April), writes Andrew Snaith.

Two Belfast boys will be locking horns on the sidelines after The Dabbers recently parted company with joint managers Kevin Street and Darren Tinson.

Jimmy Quinn, who played 48 times for Northern Ireland was appointed to the Nantwich hotseat earlier this month.

In a glittering playing career, the striker scored 79 goals for Reading, who he later managed.

Whitby manager and fellow countryman Tommy Cassidy was relieved to beat a stubborn Hucknall but was disappointed with the second half display.

“The players have to realise that we’ve got to play for long periods,” said Cassidy.

“We did it last Saturday at Matlock and we’ve got to do it this Saturday and hopefully get another three points.”

Cassidy answered recent criticism of the team’s style of play by insisting that getting three points is the most important thing at the moment.

“I know where he’s coming from, as that’s the way I’ve always done it as a player and manager.

“I want the supporters to know that I understand what they want, hopefully we can get a few wins and then play it around a bit more towards the end of the season.

“But survival is the most important thing. It’s going to be completely different next season, but let’s get there first.”

Skipper Tony Hackworth, the Blues’ match-winner on Wednesday, agreed, adding: “At this stage of the season, we just need points on the board, regardless of the style of play.

“We set ourselves a target of seven points from three games, Saturday’s another big game and hopefully one we can win. It’s vital we stay in this division and everyone at the club is working hard to ensure we do that.”

Club physio Kenny Bolton has been a busy man this week, but he confirmed that everyone now has a clean bill of health with striker Andy Campbell back in contention after a month on the sidelines.

Bolton has also been treating Joe Cornforth (neck), Ibby Hassan (shoulder), Tony Hackworth (hamstring), Chris Batchelor (groin), Davey Southern (tibia), Leon Scott (medial ligament) and Jimmy Beadle (back).

Nantwich have just one win from their last 12 outings, but defeated the Blues 3-1 earlier in the season with Cassidy in the crowd, days before he took the reins. Admission is the usual £7.50 adults, £4.50 concessions and £2 under 18s, with a 3pm kick-off.

The Blues complete their third home game in succession on Wednesday (6 April) when promotion-chasers Buxton visit with a 7.45pm kick-off.