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View from the Dugout: Last week was one of our best yet – now let’s make it a sixth straight home win

Altrincham FC manager Phil Parkinson with his latest column for Altrincham Today…

Altrincham FC manager Phil Parkinson with his latest column for Altrincham Today…

Last Saturday’s 2-1 win at Chester is right up there with the best performances since I became manager of the club, particularly when you consider the magnitude of the game, the size of the crowd and that Chester were unbeaten in 11.

The first half was superb and the players showed tremendous bravery to play that well under pressure and they also showed great resilience to come back from conceding an equaliser to take the game to Chester and score a winner.

Every game poses a different challenge but it’s great to know that this team can go to places like Chester and limit them to very little threat and perform incredibly well… the lads have set the benchmark sky high now.

We have another mountain to climb today as we entertain York City at the J Davidson Stadium in the Vanarama National League (3pm kick off).

York prevented Chester from going top of the league on Tuesday in a 0-0 draw at their Bootham Crescent ground and they are a massive club at this level of football with a big playing budget to match being one of the top payers in the league alongside Kidderminster Harriers, Stockport County and Southport.

They have signed two players this week on loan from Kidderminster, who were regulars for Harriers earlier in the season, including Joe Ironside who we rate very highly and we were surprised when he didn’t start against us for Kidderminster in September. Strikers of his quality do not come cheap and that is a demonstration of the financial clout that the Minstermen have.

Owen Dale in action at Chester last week

We are punching above our weight financially but will need to be at the top of our game to make it six consecutive home victories, after we didn’t win any of our five opening games at the J Davidson Stadium.

James Poole is still at least a week away from being ready to return from his hamstring injury but we are hopeful that James Jones will be able to play, after his hamstring tightened up during the game at Chester on Saturday.

Some of the travelling support at Chester

We have brought two new players in during the last couple of days. I tried to bring Kallum Mantack in on loan from Oldham Athletic last season but Stockport County were able to offer the Latics better loan terms.

We moved quickly to secure his services when we knew his deal at Stockport was coming to an end and Kallum is a winger who offers a goal threat and can also play full back. Although he is only 20, he is quite experienced, having played for Oldham’s first team and on loan at Alfreton, FC United of Manchester and Stockport County.

Josh Langley is a former captain of AFC Fylde who brings a wealth of quality and experience to a team that will suit his attributes. A footballing central defender, Josh has won this league and I believe that our style of play will get the best out of him. If I’ve got this right, we will have a top player at our disposal.

Photos: Michael Ripley