By Stephen Burton
Next for Blyth Spartans is a daunting midweek trip to Edgar Street to take on Hereford FC.
Last time out Michael Nelson’s side suffered a late second half collapse as they fell to a 4-0 defeat to Kettering, slipping to bottom of National League North.
Spartans will face a tough test against a Hereford side that currently sit in 12th place, however they can take some encouragement from the fact that the Bulls only have one home league win to their name so far this campaign.
After missing out last weekend Sean Reid, Saturdays clash against Hereford will be another opportunity to make his 200th Spartans appearance.
Josh Gowling’s Hereford side had failed to win any of their opening six league games, with their first victory coming in on 28th December with a 1-0 win away at York City. The Bulls have enjoyed an uptick in form, with their 2-0 win over Guiseley this weekend, their second on the bounce.
WHAT WE’RE SAYING
Speaking after the Kettering defeat, a disappointed Nelson told BSFCTV: “We went in at half-time at 1-0. We said to them, whoever did the basics right would probably win the game, but we just didn’t do it.
It hurts myself and Micky a great deal. But at the end of the day, us being hurting is not going to change the results. The players need to take the information we’re giving them on board.
We’ve got to keep going. That today wasn’t about shape or systems, it was about heart and desire and doing the basics, but they did that better than us.
We always expect the senior lads to take charge and rally the troops, but it’s being going on a long time now and nothing has changed. Hopefully they’re in there hurting, I know I am, and hopefully there can be a reaction on Tuesday.”
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Gowling spoke to Hereford’s YouTube channel after their win against Guiseley. “You’ve got to find a way of grinding wins out, and we did that today. It’s pleasing but we’ve still got a lot of work to do.
I’ve said all along we’ve got a very good squad, and when everyone’s fit we’ve got a squad that can do something. So it’s nice that everyone is pretty much back now.”
LAST TIME WE MET
Blyth have endured a miserable run against Hereford, losing their last four since Hereford’s promotion to National League North in 2018.
Their last meeting was at Croft Park in November 2020 where the Bulls ran out 3-0 winners.