Pike to unleash Borough newcomer

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Alex Pike insists his new signing Nick Awford will be involved against Maidenhead United at Privett Park tomorrow (3pm).

The Pompey midfielder was signed by Gosport Borough a week ago – but he was not registered for the Skrill South battle with Bromley at the weekend.

Awford played in the home friendly with Salisbury City on Monday night, though.

And Pike, who The News understands has been limited by a registration embargo so far this term, is confident he will boost the Borough squad tomorrow.

‘Nic Awford will give us a different dimension coming from a professional club,’ said the boss, who is hunting for his first Skrill South win after two draws and three defeats.

‘He showed in our midweek friendly against Salisbury he will give us energy in the middle of the park.

‘The lad is a good passer of the ball and capable of breaking down opposition play.

‘It isn’t just one-way traffic, though, as we can provide him with good experience in his career development.’

Pike knows it won’t be easy as Maidenhead arrive on the south coast unbeaten.

Ex-Hawks hitman Richard Pacquette leads the Magpies’ line – and has already netted three times this term.

In contrast, Borough have struggled to find the net – and Pike is keen to put that right.

‘We need more goals,’ said the Privett Park boss.

‘At the moment we are needing six chances to score one.

‘We had a great opportunity of picking up a point at Bromley last weekend.

‘Justin Bennett was clear in front of goal towards the end but failed to score. We cannot afford to keep doing that.

‘It is important that we start putting things right.

‘Last season we recovered after a making a poor start to get promoted.

‘This is a totally different situation and it will be far more difficult to make a similar improvement at this level.

‘A lot of my players have played at this level before but it is still proving to be a steep learning curve.

‘We have to kick on and learn a lot quicker.

‘It is the players who have got us into this mess and it is now up to them to get us out.’

Brett Poate picked up a thigh strain against Salisbury and is a doubt, while Luke King is expected to be out for a couple of weeks with a knee problem.

Dan Smith has a hamstring problem but Pike hopes to include Dan Woodward.