View From The Dugout

View From The Dugout: A win against today’s relegation rival is a must

By Matt Doughty at

The latest column for Altrincham Today from manager Matt Doughty

There’s a pitch inspection at half past ten this morning to see if today’s Vanarama National League North game against Gainsborough Trinity will go ahead at 3pm.

We have had covers on the pitch for the last few days. They were put on to protect against frost but the temperatures haven’t been as low as the weather forecasters thought, so the main threat is rain.

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Nicky Clee chases the ball against Gloucester City

Neil Brown, our excellent groundsman, is hopeful that the game will go ahead, although there is an area of concern in the corner of the pitch where the Golf Road End meets the Popular Side.

Gainsborough are one of the teams that are involved in fighting against relegation and we really do need to win today to start to bridge the large gap between us and them.

Sean Miller is not going to be fit today, needing another week to recover from his damaged toe tendons. Simon Richman is available but isn’t 100% fit after suffering a slight reaction to his thigh injury on Wednesday at Runcorn.

Doughty instructs his players from the touchline

Doughty instructs his players from the touchline

Both Shaun Densmore and Alan Goodall (groin injury) are a couple of weeks away from featuring and Craig Hobson’s broken foot still has a pot on it, so he will not return for a month or so.

We approached Chester this week to see if they had any strikers available and Jon McCarthy told me that a former Stoke City Under-18 striker, Tomi Adeloye, had been training with them and whilst he had done well, he wasn’t in a position to offer him anything at the moment. We have signed Tomi and he is available for today’s game.

The pain of another defeat last weekend

The pain of another defeat last weekend

Further options up front are important as I think that if our front two had performed better last week, we would have beaten Gloucester City. Andy Owens tried a bit too hard on his home debut and Damian Reeves had an off day and we lost to a single goal that was completely preventable.

I played a strong team in the Cheshire Senior Cup at Runcorn Town and the players did well to win 4-0. It can be difficult to be motivated for County Cup games but we worked hard to get the lads up for it and they did a good job, particularly Laurence Taylor, who once again stepped up from the reserves to put in a great performance in midfield.

Highlights from the defeat to Gloucester City:

Pictures: Gavin Rathbone