It’s Match day Minus One of the Bootiful Game’s HEM-ATH 360 degree coverage of the Toolstation NCEL Premier Division clash between Hemsworth Miners Welfare and Athersley Recreation. Yesterday, the focus was very much on the Penguins and on the man in the middle, Danny Guest – but today we hear from the home side, starting, appropriately enough, with Wells Manager, Wayne Benn, who is understandably keen to put last weekend’s FA Vase defeat at Irlam behind his players as soon as possible, writes Colin Muncie.
“On Saturday we entertain near neighbours Athersley Rec looking to put behind us the disappointment of last week,” Wayne explained to TBG. “We know it won’t be easy – it never is against Rec and we will certainly need to play better than last Saturday if we want to win the game. This will be only our second League game in almost five weeks, so it’s important to win to stay in the mix.
I’ve said before that we won’t pay attention to League tables until after Christmas or when most teams have played the same number of games; but what’s undeniable is that we have to do our jobs and get on a good run to stay in touch with the leading group.”
Wayne knows that Athersley won’t be coming to Hemsworth just to enjoy the hospitality. “We would like that good run of form to start on Saturday,” Wayne insisted, “but we will have to go and earn it. Athersley will make it tough for sure, and they will have our full respect but we need to concentrate on ourselves. Our form is a little bit too up and down for my liking – and that needs to improve quickly.”
Wayne will be looking closely at the fitness of his squad before the contest. “We are in a period where injuries are biting,” he admitted, “but that’s not an excuse and I’m not looking for sympathy. Every side experience it during the season.”
“It’s time for our big players to step forward with some big performances to get us through this tricky period.”