Gary Moran confident of a change in league fortunes for Rugby Town - The Rugby Observer

Gary Moran confident of a change in league fortunes for Rugby Town

Rugby Editorial 18th Nov, 2016   0

FOOTBALL: RUGBY Town go in search of an elusive league victory, as they face up to two more home games in the next week when both Newcastle Town and Leek visit Butlin Road.

Valley last recorded a three pointer towards the end of August at Kidsgrove, and they suffered another NPL reverse last Saturday – losing out 2-1 to Romulus.

This latest defeat kept Town anchored to the bottom of the South Division table, although there was some joy on Tuesday evening when they secured a place in the next round of the League Cup after beating Ilkeston in a penalty shoot-out following a 0-0 draw.

Reflecting on the past couple of league fixtures, Rugby manager Gary Moran focused on the need to close games out more effectively. He said: “I thought we played well against Rushden last week and having taken the lead, I was disappointed not to get the win.

“Likewise against Romulus, putting aside the sending off of Kyle (Rowley), we have not managed the game properly and have let them back into it far too easily, but again I think there were some encouraging signs in the performance which hopefully we can build upon.”

Moran continued: “I’m still confident that we can pull ourselves out of the situation we are in and there are still plenty of points to be played for, but for sure losing can become a habit, so we are working hard with the players to keep their spirits up.

“We’re also working hard every day to bring in a few new faces too, as there are areas that we have identified that we need to improve and strengthen.”

Saturday’s visitors Newcastle are currently top of the table on the back of a run of eight NPL games with just one defeat, making them the surprise package of the season so far after only finishing in 14th position last time out.

Tuesday evening’s opponents Leek are another side in decent form, with their recent victory at Loughborough extending their unbeaten streak to eight matches, although Valley did beat both Staffordshire clubs in the Butlin Road fixtures last season.

Moran concluded: “It certainly will be tough this weekend, but aside from the second half performance by Shaw Lane recently, I haven’t really seen much to fear in this league so far.

“We’ve generally been edged out by the odd goal in matches, and I believe that the players that we have here do have the ability in them to step up and compete with the top teams, but of course we need to improve our game management if we get in front.”

*Rugby’s scheduled trip to Witton a week Saturday (26th) has been postponed due to the Cheshire’s continued involvement in the FA Trophy.

This means that Town’s run of home fixtures will now be extended to seven, with Sheffield due at Butlin Road on December 3rd – three days before a Wolverhampton Wanderers side visit for a Birmingham Senior Cup tie.

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