Assistant manager Neil Sorvel with this week’s column for Altrincham Today…
It was great to get back in action against Kidderminster last Saturday after three weeks without a game and for the first half hour we played really well, scoring two goals that eventually won us the game.
Kidderminster are a good side that should be in a better position than they are and they got back in the contest with a goal before half time and in the second half we had a lot of defending to do, displaying a high level of resilience and had that bit of luck that you sometimes need to win a game.
Mark Yates’ side went into the game really needing all three points and when we have been playing teams that are in the chasing pack behind us, the last thing that we always tell the players is that a point is the minimum that we need to keep the gap at least the same with one game more played and Saturday’s win has put us six points ahead of Kidderminster with two games in hand and they only have five games to play.
They are not out of the chase for a play-off place but even if they put together a run of five straight wins, it’s going to be difficult for them to finish in the top seven.
Today we travel to Derbyshire to take on Alfreton Town, who are a side that have generally been pretty inconsistent throughout the season but are in a very good run at the moment, having won four and drawn two of their last six league games, which have included a victory over Chorley, the league leaders, and draws against Spennymoor and Bradford Park Avenue, who are both likely to make the play-offs.
Billy Heath has some talented players in his squad and they will think that they still have an outside chance of sneaking into the play-offs if they can finish the season very strongly. We will need to play really well to come back with a positive result from a ground that we won at last season in the FA Trophy.
Saturday is the first of four very tough looking games that we need to tick off one at a time.
We have a strong squad to choose from with Jake Moult, Tom Hannigan and Connor Hampson all shaking off minor knocks to train on Thursday night. James Poole has also trained this week, which has been a bonus. The only doubt is Billy Sass-Davies who sustained an ankle knock playing for Crewe Under 23s.