Eastwood aiming to finish as high as possible in 'mini-league'

Eastwood CFC joint-boss Paul Rockley believes the UCL Premier Division North has developed into a series of mini-leagues – and he wants the Red Badgers to finish as high as possible in theirs.

Friday, 11th February 2022, 9:23 am
Updated Friday, 11th February 2022, 9:40 am
Eastwood CFC joint-manager Paul Rockley wants to build momentum ahead of next season.
Eastwood CFC joint-manager Paul Rockley wants to build momentum ahead of next season.

With Long Eaton United and Gresley Rovers battling it out at the top and Anstey Nomads also having an eye on a potential runners-up spot, nine points separate fourth place from sixth and there are just eight points between Melton in seventh and Eastwood in 14th.

And Rockley says finishing as high in that mid-table group as possible is the club’s aim, particularly with a view towards building momentum for a more concerted promotion push next season.

He said: “Obviously we’d love to get results against he leading sides and those games are a good guide as to our progress, but we want to take points off of those around us to help climb the table and gain some real momentum.

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"Obviously we won’t go up and I’d like to think it’s unlikely we’ll get dragged into a relegation scrap, so competing in this kind of ‘mini-league’ gives us a good focus.”

Eastwood’s next game is on Saturday away at Deeping Rangers, who currently lie five places and six points above the Red Badgers.

Last weekend saw Eastwood host title-chasing Gresley, Steve Hart’s hat-trick the difference as the visitors won 3-1.

Rockley said: “The difference on the day was that they took what chances they had and we didn’t. We made errors for all three goals and their quality is such that they finished them all and Steve Hart took away the match ball.

"But I felt we gave a good account of ourselves overall and it was a good learning curve for us.”

One player who won’t feature at Deeping is Louis Czerwak, whose loan spell from Carlton Town has ended and won’t be renewed.

Rockley said: “Louis has done really well for us and we thank him for his efforts.

"Carlton want to add him to their matchday squad again so he won’t be returning but we won’t be actively looking for a replacement as we are happy with the squad as things stand and given our position.”

Following the Deeping game, Eastwood will then travel to the currently unbeaten league leaders Long Eaton United a week later.