Points over performance at this stage, says Weston
Craig Weston will take the points in whatever way they come as his Selston side look to maintain their lead at the top of the CML South.
Reigning champions Selston have again established a substantial advantage at the summit this time around, with only eight games of their league season remaining.
And Weston wouldn’t have it any other way despite knowing the chasing pack could mathematically go top in the title race if they were to win all their games in hand.
He said: “We’ve got eight left and we’re counting down. I’d love to win it by playing lovely football but we want the points anyway we can at this stage of the season.”
Weston went to watch two teams with eyes on usurping Selston on Wednesday night as Eastwood Community played host to Hucknall Town at Coronation Park.
A 1-1 draw was probably the best outcome for Selston, who have a seven-point gap to Eastwood in second and 15 points ahead of Hucknall. Hucknall have six games in hand.
“I’ve always been of the notion to set sides up, get them fit and get them out of the blocks quite early and people will be looking to catch you,” said Weston.
“Momentum then takes hold and it’s a lot easier when you’re up top then having to chase. It’s okay having those games in hand but those games have got to be won.
“We’ve put pressure on other teams because they can’t afford to slip up. Eastwood and Hucknall have got games in hand and can both catch us mathematically.
And added: “Hucknall, especially, have games in hand but they’ve only got to have one or two knocks or a few setbacks and the pressure intensifies. Can they stand up to that?
“We’ve played a few more than others but we’ve got points on the board it’s up to them to catch us. We’re quite happy with where we are.
“Hucknall have got Swanwick after that and it’s a tough place to go. I used to play for Swanwick and people do not like going there.”
Selston returned to winning ways, after defeat to Swanwick Pentrich Road on December 27, at home to Matlock Town Reserves on Saturday, with a 2-1 victory.
Carl Moore got both goals for Weston’s men, early in the second half, which proved decisive. An own goal late on for Matlock turned out to be nothing more than a consolation.
“Nothing surprised me about Matlock,” said Weston. “We’ve been caught in the past because they are really fast starters, they come out of the blocks well.
“We’ve found ourselves a couple of goals behind before we’ve clicked into gear so I made a point to the lads to make them aware, if they’d forgotten, to start well.
“We didn’t give them anything to hold on to. It was a solid performance - nothing sparkly. It was 100 per cent better than the Swanwick game.
“One or two words were said after the defeat to Swanwick. Not one player came out of that with any credit. It was so disappointing but on Saturday we were back.
“We dominated most of the play but they sat back at times to soak it up, which they did quite well at times, we had to be patient to get behind them.
“That’s what eventually happened. We broke them down. We got two good goals by being a little bit more direct, we caught them before they got organised.”
Selston travel to Linby Colliery, who overcame another title contender in South Normanton FC 3-2 last time out, this coming Saturday (January 14, 2pm).
Weston added: “It’s a tough place to go. You’ve got to be very adaptable in this league. It’s a very narrow pitch.
“We usually set up with width, it’s one of our strong points, but we’ll have to make changes and adapt a little bit to the conditions.
“We struggled a bit there last year but the players will be aware of that. It won’t be a classic.”