Southern League: ‘Stand up and be counted’ – Leiston boss Driver... ‘Sing out loud!’ – Lowestoft manager Godbold... Needham pushing top five...
- Credit: Archant
Leiston will be looking to bounce back from a 1-0 defeat to St Ives Town in midweek as they host Kings Langley in the BetVictor Southern League Central Premier tomorrow afternoon, 3pm.
A Robbie Parker penalty for St Ives on Tuesday night helped the Cambridgeshire side to the points and cut the gap between them and the Blues to four points, with both teams having 11 league games still to play.
Siju Odelusi has left the club and signed for Hayes & Yeading, while Harry Knights has been recalled from his loan spell with Felixstowe & Walton United.
Today's visitors currently occupy 11th spot but are on a great run of form at the moment as they are unbeaten in nine league matches, a run that sees them unbeaten in 2020 as they last tasted a league defeat on Boxing Day last year at home to Royston Town.
"We have to try and bounce back after the midweek defeat to St Ives Town," admitted Blues manager Glen Driver.
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"The players need to realise we are in a relegation dog fight and we need to pick up results as there are teams going for the play-offs and fighting to stay in this league.
"Teams in this league are not going to turn up and give us results.
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"Kings Langley are in the top three of the form table so we expect another tough match. We need to stick together and get through what has been a difficult season for everyone involved at the club.
"It's time to stand up and be counted and that goes for us all as we try to maintain our Step 3 status."
Meanwhile, Lowestoft Town manager Jamie Godbold says his players "are up" for the challenge of three tough games in a week.
With two home league games and the chance to reach a semi-final in the coming week, the Blues boss has called on his squad to respond following successive away defeats.
Prior to that, Lowestoft had secured back-to-back home wins - and Godbold has sent out a rallying call to the Trawlerboys supporters to get behind the players at a crucial point of the campaign.
Lowestoft remain 16th in the BetVictor Southern Premier Central table as they prepare to entertain 15th-placed Biggleswade Town tomorrow.
A 2-0 defeat away at Stourbridge last Saturday followed, before a midweek trip to face Kings Langley was called off following a pitch inspection.
Despite the defeats, Godbold admitted spirits "are really high" in the dressing room as the Blues approach the end-of-season run-in.
He said: "The boys are up for Saturday.
"We've had a good week at training, spirits are really high and mentally we are in a good place as we approach the back end of the season.
"The next two league games are at home, and the call to the fans is to get behind us, sing out loud and cheer us on.
"We are aiming to put a good run of home form together, after winning our last two home games, and that is all helped by our supporters."
Meanwhile, Needham Market may be in 12th position in the Southern League Central Premier, but they are still in with a sniff of a top five play-off place.
A recent run of victories for Kevin Horlock's side, which came to a halt at Banbury on Tuesday night, has lifted the Marketmen to within six points of fifth spot.
However, their run of form will be put to the test today as they travel to high-flying, second-placed Peterborough Sports.
Peterborough are unbeaten in their last six games and are on a good run of form, just like Needham.
When the two sides met back in October at Bloomfields, the Marketmen came out 2-1 victors.
On Tuesday night Needham travel to Leiston in the Suffolk Premier Cup on a night when all four ties take place - the other three being Hadleigh v Lowestoft, Walsham v Bury and Stowmarket v Brantham.
Next Saturday, Needham entertain AFC Rushden.