Pike: Gosport Borough no longer facing mission impossible

Alex Pike. Picture: Malcolm Wells
Alex Pike. Picture: Malcolm Wells
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Alex Pike believes Gosport Borough’s Southern League premier division relegation fight has changed from mission impossible to mission improbable.

Borough produced a gutsy display against runaway league leaders Hereford on Tuesday night.

They ended up losing the clash 4-0 but Gosport showed they are not going down without a fight.

The Privett Park side are rooted to the foot of the table and are four points off safety.

Borough host fourth-placed Kettering Town tomorrow (3pm) but will be buoyed by their performance against the Bulls.

However, Pike admitted his side must cut out individual errors if they are going to give themselves a chance of surviving.

The boss said: ‘It is like going from mission impossible to mission improbable in five days.

‘We showed against Hereford that we can go out and compete.

‘It is important, though, that we learn from our mistakes which ultimately cost us.

‘All we can do is keep looking to build and look to improve our performances.

‘If we can do that then the results will inevitably follow.

‘Defensively, we need to tighten up and that is not a slight on our back four. I

‘It is how we defend as a team and a unit.

‘We have to sense danger and get ourselves into positions to deal with it.

‘Against Hereford we showed a lot of resolve and doggedness until their second goal went in.

‘All their goals were preventable.’

Pike was delighted with the debut performances of Rowan Vine and Bristol Rovers loanee Charlie Ten-Grotenhuis in midfield against Hereford.

Borough are also hoping to have three players back after they missed the clash on Tuesday.

Pat Suraci was ill, while Eastleigh loanees Mark Childs and Harvey Read picked up knocks in training.

Pike expects the trio to be available to face Kettering.

If keeper Childs is fit, then the Gosport boss will have a difficult decision to make as AFC Bournemouth loanee Patrick O’Flaherty did well between the posts against the Bulls.

Meanwhile, Pike is looking for his troops to be more creative in their attacks.

He added: ‘We have to pass the ball better and not keep giving it away.

‘Our forwards have been feeding off scraps.

‘We must give the likes of Craig McAllister, Ryan Pennery and Vine better service.

‘At Redditch we showed we can do that when we created a host of chances in the game.

‘There is a need for us to play further up the pitch.

‘By doing that we also take a lot of pressure off our defenders at the back.

‘It is very difficult if the ball keeps coming straight back at you.’

Gosport Borough: O’Flaherty, Childs, Wakley, Medway, Flooks, Read, Ten-Grotenhuis, Warren, Lea, Brooks, McAllister, Pennery, Vine, Suraci, Sanders, Watts, Bombelenga, Mayes