It feels like a critical day in tenth-placed Hallam’s Play-Off aspirations on Saturday, when eighth-placed Campion come calling at Sandygate. The Countrymen are nine points off a third consecutive Play-Off place with games in hand on some of the teams above them-and the Hallam Management trio recognise that last week’s battling draw at Worsborough bridge provided a platform on which they can build, writes Colin Muncie.
First, though, Joint manager Steven Whitehead wants the action to get started. He told the Bootiful Game “Hopefully we will get the game on -although there will have been 2 or 3 evenings where the temperatures have been below zero. If the fixture does go ahead, it’s another tough game but one which we need to win if we are going to start closing the gap on the teams above us. We think that we have now assembled a squad capable of getting us into the Play-Offs”.
“It’s a matter of making sure we pick the right team- and that team goes out and gets us a result come 5pm Saturday”.
Joint Manager Scott Bates wants to draw on that second half fight back at Park Road. “It’s a big game for us after recent weeks” he said.” We were pleased with the second half performance at Worsbrough, but the first was a disappointment. League positions don’t lie and we are there for a reason, so we all need to prepare right -and come with the right attitude”.
Assistant Manager Dean Bamforth knows that the men from Scotchman Road will provide stiff opposition, having beaten Hallam 3-2 in the reverse fixture in early September. He told us “It’s another tough one on Saturday against Campion. They impressed us earlier in the season, and they’re unbeaten in about six games, I think, and they always score goals. We again have to brush ourselves down from disappointment of last week- maybe we’ve got to be more direct like other clubs!”
Dean hinted at a more robust approach from his side, and is pleased to see a couple of favourites back in blue. “We need our players to start doing both sides of the coin and not just pretty football” he said. “The positives from last week are that we came from two down and finished the game strongly. It’s nice to be back at home on a Saturday, though”.
“I’m sure our fans will be pleased to see old faces (Micah) Bishop and (Ollie) Beaumont back”.