Worksop Town travelled home down the A15 from Barton with just a point in hand, but as manager Craig Denton reveals, he was happy with the result.
“Yes, I was pleased with the final result when we’ve taken a point. I’m obviously disappointed when we don’t take all three points but I don’t think we really deserved the three points when our midfielders don’t create too much, our strikers don’t get shots off in the box, we don’t set up right for attacking corners and we don’t test their ‘keeper. We’re not going to be expecting to take three points so there are a few little areas that we need to look at.”
“I thought Davey, our goalkeeper, had an exceptional performance but, apart from that, I don’t think we got out of second gear, to be honest. I’m just disappointed we didn’t test their ‘keeper but the lads dug in and showed lots of resilience. Their work rate and effort was really up there but the quality was slightly missing yesterday.”
That’s quite a fair reflection. Dave Ricardo said in his post-match interview that he’s a bit frustrated by the result but not by the effort and the quality from his side. He thought it was a good advert for the Northern Counties in regard to the desire and commitment by both sides.
“Desire and commitment is obviously something that a lot of managers expect but, if you want to win games, I think you need to add a little more quality. You certainly need to test their ‘keeper! I can’t knock my lads for effort and commitment but I doknow that they’ve got a little bit more in the tank. I’m happy in one sense but a little bit disappointed.”
The result leaves you seventh in the table. You’ve still got games in hand so you must still be pleased with a draw.
“Exactly. We’re trying to get our average points per game up as best we can. We’re trying to make sure we don’t lose! A lot of managers would say “is it a positive when you don’t get beaten?” and it is. We’re going into games wanting to win but obviously we’ve got full respect of our opposition so, when we don’t lose, that’s a tick in the box. When we take the three points, I’m happy with that.”
“We’ve got to keep working hard and we’ve got to keep looking at where we can improve. They’re only little minor things but they make a big difference. There were a couple of teams yesterday who dropped points and it’s made that top six really tight now – and interesting. I think a lot of the hard work is going to start now from some teams and, if you noticed, there were a few high scorelines yesterday. We’ve just got to maintain what we’re doing and be positive.”
It’s another clean sheet for yourselves.
“Yes. It gives confidence to our goalkeeper and to our defenders… to the whole team, to be honest. It’s nice to get a clean sheet. It shows that we are doing something right in terms of our defending, which is a really strong point when we come up against sides and against good centre forwards. They’ll know that Worksop have not conceded last week. It plays a big part but all we can do is affect our lads and, if we’re good with our defending, we just need to get our other side a little bit sharper and a little bit cuter.”
“Like I said, it’s a hard-earned point and I think both teams were happy with the final result.”
It’s been 252 days since a Worksop Town side has played in front of less than 100 fans, both home and away. How important are the fans to the team?
“They’re really important to us. We understand that. Yesterday – with the train service and a couple of the local diehard fans couldn’t make it unfortunately – it’s just past the Christmas period. With travelling and family, non-league is “cheap” but, when you’re going by train and having some beers and something to eat and so on, we’ve got to understand that we’re not going to get every single Worksop fan away at Barton. It’s also over an hour’s drive.”
“Our home crowd speaks volumes and that is all that really counts for me. We have a notice on the NCEL website that we’ve been having an increase in our attendances as well this season so that’s another stat for you!”
It is and it was also Barton’s biggest attendance of the season.
“Yes, I think they all came to win the plasma screen TV!”
And a Worksop Town fan won it, I believe.
“Rich Nelson came out on top! He did spend eleven quid on it and I asked him to go halves and he said no. But I only chucked £2 in the pot so…”
You’ve got a 6.74% increase on your attendance from last season.
“Points are good. Attendances are good. Our teams are competing. I think the supporters are happy with what we’ve got. When I came into my interview, the first thing said was we need a team the supporters can be proud of and a club they’re going to be proud of and I think we’re winners with that.”
You’re averaging 396, which is something to be very proud of.
“Exactly. That’s not just me. That’s the club: our Chairman and everyone connected with the club who’s working really hard. Everyone does their bit and, when everyone’s singing from the same hymn sheet and working really hard together, you get the results both on and off the pitch.”