Seasiders are looking to bounce back after two-week break – and after two home defeats

Ex-Ipswich Town and West Ham trainee Sam Ford, left, is looking to establish his Felixstowe first t

Ex-Ipswich Town and West Ham trainee Sam Ford, left, is looking to establish his Felixstowe first team place. Photo: STAN BASTON - Credit: Archant

The Felixstowe & Walton management team of Kevin O’Donnell and Ian Watson will be hoping the 14 days off, or rather, without a game, will have given their squad a chance to refocus ahead of this weekend’s trip to Newmarket Town, quickly followed by Tuesday night’s Suffolk Premier Cup tie at Bostik Premier Division, Needham Market, writes Phil Griffiths.

Having ended January with two home defeats in four days, the Seasiders have opened the door for the chasing pack and no longer have their destiny in their own hands.

Coggeshall Town, with six games in hand, trail the Seasiders by 15 points, with in-form Stowmarket a further two points back, although they have played four games less.

Taylor Hastings had a run-out with the reserves last week and will be eager to be involved this weekend, along with Ingram, Ford and Pelling, who were all involved last weekend, and the management will be hoping to have close to a full squad available, although Josh Kerridge is still a few weeks away and Jordan Matthews perhaps another week.

Newmarket are having a mixed season.

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They started the day in eighth place under new manager Michael Shinn, who took over the Jockeys’ reins at the Bloor Stadium following long-time manager Kevin Grainger’s decision to step down.

The former Haverhill Rovers boss will see this match as an ideal opportunity to put his brand down on how he wants his side to play.

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They have won three and lost three of their last six games, with a surprise 2-1 defeat at Long Melford last time out.

But they had been scoring plenty up to that loss.

For the Seasiders, it’s all about how they perform.

If they can regain their pre-Christmas form, they will prove very difficult to dislodge from top spot, regardless of other results.

Their record at the Bloor Stadium is good, having picked up maximum points on their last two visits, and another three points from this encounter would put them firmly back on track.

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