The latest column for Altrincham Today from manager Matt Doughty, as told to Jacques Talbot
One point from two tough away games might not seem that great but I have been pleased with the two performances this week.
At Chorley, we battled well in the second half, despite having conceded two first half goals, but our opponents defended well to keep a clean sheet and showed why they have the lowest goals against tally in the league.
Tuesday night’s trip to Northamptonshire to take on Brackley Town didn’t get off on the right foot when Tom Hannigan pulled up with a hip injury in the warm up and couldn’t start the game.
Highlights from the defeat to Chorley:
Nicky Clee put us ahead with a lovely chip from the edge of the area early on but our defending wasn’t tight enough for the next 20 minutes and Brackley created some good chances.
Having missed a penalty, they equalised midway through the half but from then on, I thought that we did well and as the fog came down, threatening the completion of the game, it was the Brackley manager, Kevin Wilkin, who was putting pressure on the referee to call the game off, whilst we were happy to continue, despite the poor visibility.
We defended really well in the second half and looked dangerous on the break in an open game. Kyle Brownhill had his best game in an Alty shirt to date in midfield, where he looked more at home than he has done at left back.
Today we play the league leaders AFC Fylde and the league table shows that there are 50 points between the two teams, so it’s very easy to see what a tough assignment this is!
Dave Challinor’s team are hot favourites to win the league and rightly so. They are a full time professional club with phenomenal financial backing and a new £6 million stadium.
Funnily enough, I think that we are better suited to playing the sides that like to play good football and I expect a good performance today.
Nicky Clee and Damian Reeves both missed training on Thursday due to illness and must be rated doubtful but Tom Hannigan should be OK to face the club he was captain of last year. Sam Patterson and Sam Heathcote are set to be available, after both being injured on Tuesday night.
Alan Goodall starts his comeback from a groin injury in the Reserves at Denton, where I am hoping that he will play for at least 45 minutes.
Today is the last game of Elliott Newby’s month loan but we have agreed with the Barrow manager, Paul Cox, to extend Elliott’s loan for a further month and that should be completed during the week.