Wilkin faces dilemma at both ends of the pitch

Brackley Town boss Kevin Wilkin
Brackley Town boss Kevin Wilkin

Brackley Town boss Kevin Wilkin faces a dilemma at both ends of the pitch ahead of a double-header at St James Park.

Stuttering Saints entertain third-placed Boston United on Saturday and three days later take on Southport.

Without a win or a goal in their last four games, Saints are slipping behind in Vanarama National League North.

Wilkin said: “I wouldn’t say it’s a ‘must-win’ game against Boston but one that we can’t really afford to lose. I can’t see us chasing down the leaders so in that respect Saturday’s game isn’t going to define our season.

“We’ve got a hell of a lot of work to do to get back into it following our recent run and the first thing we’ve got to do is start scoring goals again.

“We played very well in the defeat at Boston but that doesn’t mean to say we’re going to do the same again, it’s a different game. Boston are a very strong side, they beat York City recently, and have got some very good players who can affect games.

“We’re doing okay up until the final third but it doesn’t look as though we’re going to score. I’ve told the players we’ve got to score a goal first before we can start thinking about winning a game again!

“It’s been too long without a goal and seeing a blank space in the goal scorers column each week doesn’t make for good reading.

“The one crumb of comfort for us is that the performances have been there. Players are trying their hardest but we need a break in front of goal.”

The one positive is that striker Dan Holman is back in the squad as he continues his comeback. But already missing Thierry Audel, who is absent through family commitments, and then Kelvin Langmead with the ankle injury he picked up against Kettering Town, Wilkin had to play Glenn Walker in central defence at Spennymoor. And it looks as though that will be the case on Saturday if Langmead doesn’t recover because Audell will miss both games.

Wilkin added: “To lose one central defender and another who was going to replace him was frustrating, especially for Kelvin [Langmead] who has been waiting for his chance. We miss Thierry [Audel] at both ends of the pitch, for his defending and his goals from set-pieces, it’s frustrating but we just have to get on with it.”