Football
Stringer calls for positivity

By Jamie Arrowsmith 21/03 Updated: 21/03 12:19

Buy photos » Michael Williams tries to go past his man against Northwood at Butlin Road on Saturday. Picture by Martin Pulley.

RUGBY Town boss Dave Stringer is remaining upbeat despite seeing his side’s run of games without a victory stretch to three on Saturday.

Valley’s 0-0 home draw with Northwood came on the back of two defeats, but Stringer insists his side are still showing the quality required to finish in the play-offs.

“Of course the results have been frustrating over the past fortnight, and we really needed to have picked up more points, but we have still been putting in a decent level of performance,” he said.

“We’re creating plenty of chances, but have hit a bad patch in front of goal. It’s important that we stay positive though, continue to play well and hope we can convert some of these chances to get back on track again.”

Seventh placed Town are two points behind the play-off zone, with Uxbridge now occupying the final place thanks to a last minute goal which secured victory at Chalfont on Saturday.

Next-up for Stringer’s men is a trip to fourth placed Beaconsfield on Saturday, and victory at Holloways Park would reduce the gap between them to three points.

The Rams have stuttered of late, after looking a contender at the very summit of the table earlier in the season, and they have now recorded just three victories in their last 11 league fixtures.

With just seven games of the season remaining, Stringer knows his side will have to keep focused to achieve the play-off target.

“There’s no real margin of error for us now, having already had our bad patch earlier in the season,” he said.

“With the unpredictability of the other teams around us at the moment, it’s difficult to set a target of how many points we will need to make the top five, but we do know we need to get on a bit of a run, and I have faith in the squad we have at the club now to be able to do this.

“I definitely believe that if we had had this group together from the start of the season, we could have been pushing up there in the top two or three.”

Town will again be without Tyrone Fagan on Saturday as the striker serves the second of his two match ban.

With Luke Keen also ruled out with a hamstring injury, Stringer is therefore likely to rely on the pairing of Seb Hamilton and Seb Lake-Gaskin up-front.

Robbie Banks’ ongoing hamstring problems are also set to rule him out at the weekend, although Stringer is hopeful that the influential midfielder may be in line for a return the following week at home to struggling Fleet.

THE club coach to Beaconsfield will leave the clubhouse at 11.30am. For the latest information contact Tony Mann on 07970 691366.

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