Mad March games see players in good shape

Tom Kemp: Set to make his Worcester return on Saturday.

Tom Kemp: Set to make his Worcester return on Saturday.

First published in Sport

MARCH is a busy month for Worcester City — and I am looking forward to it.

We have seven Blue Square South games scheduled over the next few weeks, starting at home to Thurrock on Saturday.

They are all important games and I think the players are geared up for them. Their fitness levels are OK so all we will be doing in training is working on our team shape.

I think the players have proved their fitness in recent weeks and that’s testament to them as part-time players because they have full-time jobs away from the club.

However, the longer trips to London might have taken their toll in the second-half against Wimbledon last week, coming so soon after the Fisher Athletic game and using the same team.

So with such a hectic programme, everyone in the squad will be used as there is no room to manoeuvre with the playing budget.

Players who have been on the fringes, like Jordan Fitzpatrick, have come in and done really well of late, which is pleasing because we are looking at our options for next season and he hasn’t done himself any harm.

Craig Brown, Louis Bridges and Dan Polan all scored in the reserves’ 3-1 win against Halesowen on Monday and will also be involved.

We had a lot of trailists in for that game and assistant manager Carl Heeley played at the back in what was a good performance.

Craig played in midfield for the first-half and did exceptionally well. I think he’s a good centre-half but he looks even better in midfield.

It’s difficult to target a points total for March because we might end up with injuries and have to change the team but we look good for this weekend.

Tom Kemp will be back and we missed him against Wimbledon and Hampton and Richmond. Dave Bampton has had the injection in his ankle and should be able to train tomorrow so he will be involved in the 16.

The only person missing will be the injured Matt Dinsmore but he is still about four weeks away from being involved.

I am expecting to win at St George’s Lane on Saturday. I have not been let down by the players much this season but I think that was the case against Hampton last weekend by not being professional enough to go and clear in dangerous areas.

I was probably most despondent on Saturday after the game because it was a match we should have won in the first-half and killed off in the second. As it was, we lost it to two free headers and poor marking.

I am looking to get a response from the players this weekend.

We treat them fairly, we give them time off when we can and we all we ask for is a high work-rate from the first minute to the last.

The work ethic was there against Hampton but we got let down on professionalism.

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