RAINWORTH MW’S return to Evo-Stik NPL Division One South action after a month’s lay-off sees them resume with Saturday’s home ‘six-pointer’ against Romulus.
The Roms will be looking to bounce back from a heavy 4-0 home defeat by Ilkeston in the division’s only game to go ahead last weekend – a result which has pulled them back very much into the mix in the battle to avoid the drop.
Meanwhile, Rainworth managed to return to action on Tuesday night with a 3-2 Notts Senior Cup victory at Central Midlands South title hopefuls Basford United – a result which left their management and fans breathing a huge sigh of relief after avoiding a potential banana skin.
Manager Kevin Gee commented afterwards: “I’m glad we’ve got that game out of the way – it gave the players some minutes ahead of getting back into playing league matches again.
“We came to Basford for the win after not playing competitively for a month and we got it.
“We conceded a sloppy early goal but then played really well for the remainder of the first half, and although we haven’t done ourselves justice in the second, tonight was all about making a winning return.
“Our defensive record speaks for itself and the defence needed to be strong in the second half when Basford came back at us. When you’re 3-1 down in a cup tie you’re going to take some risks and throw bodies forward, but our defence was on top of that job.
“Unfortunately we didn’t use the ball as we should have done to take advantage of the gaps they left – when you play teams from below you have to try to let the ball do the work.
“But we’re into the quarter-finals of a competition which remains very important to us. There’s no point in entering a competition if you’re not going to go all out to win it, and if we land a decent home tie in the last eight then who knows?
“We’ve got 14 league games to go and there will always be the chance of a couple of negative results in those games, but putting the Senior Cup in between breaks it up a bit for you.
“We may have lacked a little creativity tonight, but we had forwards Ant Lynam, Matt Glass and Nathan Adams all unavailable and Rob Gill still looking to come back from injury.”
Gill is expected to train for the first time on Thursday after suffering a hamstring injury in the pre-match warm-up at Shepshed in the last league game on 21st January, and Gee is also optimistic of pulling another new face in, in a different position, ahead of Saturday’s game.
“We have to be competitive in all our remaining games, and turn that into points,” ended Gee. “If we were to draw all 14, and take 14 points, I’m sure we would stay up.”