the npl

Weekly News - 28/7/21

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Weekly News - 28/7/21

Matlock Town have two more pre-season wins in the bag this past week to make it six out of seven but their manager Paul Phillips was unhappy with the overall performances.

The Gladiators twice recovered from a goal down to beat Brighouse Town 3-2 on Saturday before on Tuesday evening they overcame Clipstone by a 4-1 margin after being held to a 1-1 scoreline at the interval.

Poor first half performances in both matches were a cause for concern for Phillips as Matlock failed to match the high standards set in previous games against higher placed sides.

Speaking after the Clipstone win Phillips declared his disappointment and said some harsh words were uttered during the half time interval.

“We weren’t very good tonight, in fact we were a disgrace in the first half. It’s alright doing well against the big teams, but you have to come to places like this and perform. Everything we would normally do we did wrong, we were second to everything and in the end we were lucky to go in level at 1-1 at half time. That said we had a few lads out and we should have been two or three up early on. We took the game away from them in the second half, there’s a difference between being a good team and a winning team, I told them so at half time, they’d created standards in previous games and they mustn’t allow them to drop.”

Phillips added that the game was a nice tribute to Marcus Beddoe and it was good to see so much money raised as Clipstone and former Matlock manager Dave Hoole presented Beddoe’s father with a cheque from a Just Giving page before kick off when there was also a minute’s applause.

The game at Brighouse was similar to Clipstone with Matlock applying themselves to the task in hand in a more business like manner in the second half.

“Again we had a poor first half, but we missed a lot of chances in the game which should have brought about a bigger win” Phillips added.

Now attention turns to Matlock’s final two pre-season matches, at Sheffield on Saturday and at Ossett United on Saturday week before the big kick off at Ashton United on August 14.

“The team for the match at Sheffield should be a better reflection of what we could start with. Obviously it’ll be a much sterner test than tonight. There shouldn’t be as many trialists as we had tonight, and there could also be some departures as we fine tune things.”

Phillips though is hoping to strengthen his attacking options in the next week.

“I’m hoping we’ll have a striker in on loan from next Monday, but generally I think we’ look pretty decent. with good competition throughout the team”

Ian Richardson