Ahead of Spalding United’s New Year’s Day clash, interim manager Lewis Thorogood said he’s looking to turn the Sir Halley Stewart into a fortress.
The Tulips are looking to bounce back after a disappointing Boxing Day defeat to lowly Wisbech Town and were due to host Lincoln United (ko 3pm) before The Voice went to press on Tuesday.
Thorogood is hoping that with the majority of their remaining games at home, form there will provide the basis of a solid end to the season.
And he’s hoping the town will turn out and support the club that are still in with a chance of mounting a push for the play-offs.
“With 18 of our last 10 games at home we’ve got to make the Sir Halley a fortress if we’re to challenge for the play-offs or finish as high as possible,” Thorogood said.
“That has to start on New Year’s Day – no excuses.
“We’ve got to put the performance in.
“It’s out first home game of 2020 and we need a big crowd to spur us on.”
Much like Spalding themselves, Lincoln have had several players leave recently amid financial concerns and they sit six places and five points below the Tulips in the table.
But they did get a 1-0 win over Worksop on Boxing Day while Spalding were losing 3-0 to a Wisbech side who also have a temporary manager and who were bottom of the table before the match.
Thorogood said he was disappointed in his players with the performance (see page 38) against a side who picked up just their third league win of the season.
“Lincoln United have had their financial issues and have had quite a few influential players leave but they’re still a good side,” said Thorogood. “They proved that with a superb win against Worksop on Saturday, so it shows any team can beat each other in this very competitive league.
“I expect a response after Boxing Day and I think the players know they need to provide one.
Joel Brownhill had to come off early in the Wisbech defeat due to an injured ankle and he’s set to spend some time on the sidelines as a result.
Jamie Jackson is also likely to be missing due to a hamstring problem.
However, after missing Boxing Day, new signings Devante Reittie and Jan Yeomans are back in contention and Kev Bastos’s three game suspension has finally come to an end.
“I’m really looking forward to having Kev back,” Thorogood said. “He’s a big player for us.”
This Tulips are back in action this weekend when they travel to Loughborough Dynamo in another fixture against a side below them in the league table.
“Loughborough are a very good team who got a creditable point at home to Stamford on Saturday,” said Thorogood “They will be very well organised and I think they will suit our style of play to be honest.
“They play on a very good pitch and I think it will be a very good game in terms of the quality of the football.”
Thorogood continues to be in temporary charge of Spalding after Matt Easton’s departure last month.
“I’m more than happy with what we’ve done so far and that’s despite the Boxing Day result which I wasn’t happy about.
“It’s been left open ended so if they want to give it me until the end of the season or beyond, or want to interview for it, I’ll throw my hat in.
“If we win on New Year’s Day then from my first five games in charge it would be two wins, two draws and a loss which is not a bad start, albeit should have been better points-wise.”