Wilkins knows Needham face big week ahead with Staines, Bognor and Havant the opposition

Richard Wilkins, right, and Mark Morsley walk out at Bloomfields

Richard Wilkins, right, and Mark Morsley walk out at Bloomfields - Credit: Archant

Richard Wilkins is settling in nicely at Needham Market.

The former Leiston boss, who was axed by the Victory Road club in the summer has – since his Blues departure – linked up as assistant manager with Mark Morsley at Bloomfields – helping guide the Marketmen to a current second place in the Ryman Premier Division table.

Needham find themselves in a fantastic position right now, even if they do have some tough games ahead.

However, that is in much contrast to the relegation scrap they endured last season.

“I’ve settled in well,” Wilkins said.

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“It’s certainly less stressful, doing more coaching, and less stressful having to deal with the politics of a being manager at a football club.

“Yes, we are sitting second and I will be delighted if we manage to keep in the play-offs until the season’s end.

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“But we face some tough matches – Bognor, Havant & Waterlooville and Dulwich Hamlet, all to come away in the next month or so.

“With the likes of Billericay and Worthing strengthening up, it’s a very competitive league.

“I think it is fair to say we are punching above our weight.

“Then again, if we can come through these next four weeks in good shape, then who knows?”

Needham entertain Staines at Bloomfields today (3pm), and with a Tuesday night trip to leaders Bognor to come, followed by next Saturday’s trip to third-placed Havant & Waterlooville, it’s a tricky eight days.

But Wilkins knows his side will give it their all.

“The boys have been fantastic so far this season,” he said.

“Organisation is the key for me that is so important.

“I also like the boys to mix it up a bit.

“It’s nice playing tippy-tappy football, but you need the good weather and you need the good surfaces to always play it on the ground like that.

“As the grounds get heavier and start to cut up a bit, we have had to do things a bit different at times.

“There’s nothing wrong with that – for me that’s fine.”

The Marketmen are hoping an injury to Jon Sands won’t prove too severe and the striker will be back in action as soon as possible. He will be missing again today, though.

“It would be good to get a win against Staines to take on the road with us this week,” Wilkins added.

“They are a typical solid Ryman Premier side and are capable of winning 3-0 as they are losing 3-0.”

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