MICK CATLIN is hoping for a first Gosport Borough Southern League premier division win of the season as Bishop’s Stortford make the trip to Privett Park (3pm).
Catlin, who has only been in the job for just over a week, started his reign with a disappointing 3-0 home defeat against Hitchin Town.
The new boss, however, was given some encouragement in midweek when they ran Moneyfields close in a League Cup tie.
Borough actually led 2-1 two minutes into stoppage-time when ex-player Sam Pearce grabbed an equaliser to send the tie to penalties.
The home side lost out 4-3 on spot-kicks but Catlin saw enough during the game to suggest the team is improving and feels that they just need a lift to get going.
‘Once we get a win under our belts it will make such a difference,’ said Catlin.
‘Our best chance has to be at home against teams who are in and around us in the league.
‘In my first game in charge the players looked nervous and looked like they were playing under pressure.
‘In the cup game they didn’t have that pressure of picking up league points.
‘They could go out and express themselves more and show what they can do.
‘I thought it was a much improved performance and hopefully the players will take a bit of confidence from it.
‘If we can produce the same level of performance against Bishop’s Stortford then we should have every chance.’
Catlin, however, has a big worry over midfielder Jamie Brown who picked up a knee injury against Hitchin.
Brown, who captained Borough at Wembley in their FA Trophy final in 2014, has been brought back by Catlin to add a bit of much needed experience.
The manager admits his absence would be a big blow.
On a positive note experienced defender Luke King is available again and is expected to go straight back into the starting line-up.
‘Luke has played for me before and knows what is expected,’ said Catlin.
‘He has been battling his way back from injury in the last two years.
‘That shows his fighting spirit which is a quality that we need in our situation.
‘He can play anywhere across the back four, is good in the air and can play a bit.’
Catlin knows he needs to bring more players in but at the moment a transfer embargo is making that difficult although the boss hopes the situation will improve soon.
‘Hopefully in the next couple of weeks I can get the players I want in,’ said Catlin.
‘In the meantime we will keep working at things in training and hopefully further improvements will come. It won’t happen overnight.’
‘Against Moneyfields we took the game to them and opened them up to create chances.
‘We need more of that against Bishop’s Stortford if we are to claim our first win in the league.’