Needham Market could go top of the Ryman North Division this afternoon but may need a helping hand from Suffolk rivals AFC Sudbury!

He's celebrating again: Needham Market striker Sam Newson has scored 11 goals in his last six games

He's celebrating again: Needham Market striker Sam Newson has scored 11 goals in his last six games - Credit: Archant

Fresh from an important 4-1 triumph over Brightlingsea Regent on Tuesday evening, Needham Market boss Mark Morsley takes his side to Romford this afternoon looking to top the Ryman North Division table again come 5pm.

Before kick-off today, only goal difference separates second-place Needham from table-toppers Harlow Town.

But, if the Marketmen are able to better Harlow’s scoreline today they will reinstate themselves at the top of the league, ironically needing a favour from Suffolk rivals AFC Sudbury, who travel to Harlow.

That said, win, lose, or draw, Needham will still be in the top two come Saturday evening after a blistering start to the season which has seen them progress through two rounds in the FA Cup as well as win 11 league games, losing just twice.

Speaking of his side’s 4-1 win over Brightlingsea, Morsley said: “It wasn’t a classic Needham win or performance by any means but it was an important one.

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“I think they’ve (Brightlingsea) done okay in this division so far (following promotion from the Thurlow Nunn Premier) and we went about our work very well.”

Two goals from Sam Newson as well as a Luke Ingram strike gave Needham a comfortable 3-0 advantage, before, following a triple Marketmen substitution on 67 minutes, Ian Westlake was sent off for handball on the line.

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“We had a little scare when Ian was sent off and they scored the resulting penalty, but like we did at Sudbury (when Kem Izzet was sent off in the first half) we were comfortable and kept the ball to the end before scoring again, which was very pleasing,” declared Morsley.

Tuesday saw red-hot striker Newson claim his 11th goal in his last six games.

“He’s done very well,” said the Needham boss.

“A few people thought he was past his best when one of the first things we did when I took charge (March 2013) was offer him a two-year contract.

“He’d had a few quieter seasons under Danny Laws (who Morsley took over from) and was injured a lot of the time, but the coaching staff and I believed in him.

“Sam loves to play, his work-rate is phenomenal, and I think he was suffering from burnout before.

“We’ve believed in him and managed him though – he’s not going to play every minute of every game – which he doesn’t particularly like but he’s a great lad and it’s great to see him doing so well!”

Newson will look to add to his goal tally today at Romford.

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