MOMENTUM is a key word when the football season reaches its latter stages – and Shortwood United seem to have that in spades.
They demolished play-off rivals Mangotsfield United 4-0 at Meadowbank on Saturday and go into the last nine games in confident mood as they look to seal a Calor League Division One South and South West play-off spot.
Saturday’s win made it one defeat in 17 games and co-manager Alex Sykes is keen that they don’t take their foot off the gas.
“We are flying,” he said. “We think that we can match anyone in this league on our day and we won on Saturday with relative ease.
“Momentum is key now, and we have nine games left – nine cup finals, and we have done okay in cup competitions this season.”
The first of those is a trip to Bridgwater tomorrow, and they sit in sixth place, a point and a place out of the play-off zone, and only three points off third place.
They are one of eight clubs chasing the four play-off
spots, and Sykes hopes the Mangotsfield result will send
a message out to their
“What pleased us the most was the manner of the win,” he said.
“Tom King in goal had virtually nothing to do for the third game running.
“That is credit to the defence and we were good going forward and could have had six goals.
“We bounced back from a disappointing result at Guildford and a tight game with Merthyr [both 0-0 draws] and now it is in our hands. That is the way we want it, and we know if we carry on as we
have been, we will be in the play-offs.
“Other teams in the running are playing each other this week, so will drop points – but that is only any good to us if we win ourselves.”
Ross Langworthy scored his first senior hat-trick to set up Saturday’s win, with the other goal coming from top scorer Duncan Culley.
“Ross has had to be patient at times, but he has done very well lately and his goals take the pressure off Duncan a bit,” said Sykes.
“The FA Cup run has been the springboard, and whatever happens now we have had a fantastic season.
“We believe this group of players can compete with
anyone at the top end of
the league and we have
proved that consistently up to now.
“We are a bit low on numbers, but Marc Richards has been outstanding recently, and Jon Cant has been good in the last few games.
“Bridgwater are probably a little bit lower in the league than they maybe should be, and gave us a tough game at home. I am expecting the same down there.”
Cinderford Town will hope to improve their dismal home record when they host Paulton Rovers at The Causeway.
After Saturday’s 3-1 reverse against Evesham, the Foresters have lost 10 out of their 15 league games at home, and that is the main reason why they sit 15th in the table.
Their opponents Paulton are on the edge of the play-off zone, in fifth place.