Poulton wants Humbugs to show they care

Hayling manager Steve Poulton
Hayling manager Steve Poulton
Wes Fogden drew a good save from the Hampton & Richmond keeper in a rare attempt on goal. Picture: Duncan Shepherd

Mixed feelings for Hawks boss after stalemate

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Hayling United boss Steve Poulton is calling on his players to show they care as they bid for vital Wessex premier division points against Totton & Eling at Hayling College (3pm).

Last season, the Humbugs escaped relegation on the final day of the season and boss Poulton doesn’t want to leave it so late again.

‘We have told the players that, if they really care about staying in this league, it is no good leaving it until the last few games,’ he said.

‘As a team, we have to show the desire now.

‘We are within touching distance of the clubs above us and the next six games will count.

‘If we can pick up three wins and a couple of draws, we can really get in among the teams ahead of us and put the pressure on them.

‘Totton & Eling might look at the fact that we are bottom of the league and make the mistake of taking us too lightly.

‘Our squad is good enough to take advantage of that.

‘We are confident about our ability but it is all about whether we can apply ourselves.’

Influential midfielder Sean Thurgood is suspended but new striker Alex Easton is set for his his debut after making the switch from Winchester City.

Hayling United: Patilla, Watts, Baker, Thornton, Gadd, Hayward, Fisher, Black, Carter, Salter-Vaile, Thurgood, Tigwell, Burney, Easton, Summers.

n Moneyfields are aiming for an 11th consecutive league win as they entertain Alton Town at Dover Road.

The in-form Copnor club have moved into fourth place and manager Miles Rutherford wants them to stay there.

‘We have got teams breathing down our neck behind us so it is important we keep our good run going,’ said Rutherford.

‘If we can finish in the top three this season that will be a great achievement.

‘We won our last game without playing particularly well and that is always a good sign.

‘I am looking for an improvement in the performance, though, and for us to get back to how we have been for the past two months.

Moneyfields: Hook, Evans, Wain, Lee, Rackley, Horrell, Davis, Middleton, Slater, Hutchings, Bailey, Asajile, Lacey, N’Doye, Gregory, Gauntlett.

n Struggling Horndean face a daunting visit to high-flying Bemerton Heath Harlequins.

‘It is a tough ask for us because they haven’t lost many this season,’ said Horndean manager Dave Carter.

‘They beat us 3-0 at our place earlier in the season but we will go there in a positive manner.

‘We have nothing to lose and anything we get will be a big bonus.

The squad is getting back to near full-strength and the time has come to raise the bar.

‘We have had meetings and extra training in a bid to turn the tide.

‘There has definitely been a change of attitude with a little bit more confidence coming back.’

New arrival Chemal Fenelon, on loan from the Hawks, continues up front and Dan Martin returns after a five-week absence with a hernia.

The Humbugs have to do without suspended central midfielder Dan Hayes.

Horndean: Howard, Smith, Shepherd, Chapman, Perkins, Spicer, Bell, Fenemore, Spurway, Milroy, Fenelon, Blackmore, Luff, McKie, Austin, Martin, Paxton, Warren.

n Fareham Town travel to Lymington Town looking to maintain their unbeaten start to the new year.

Reds manager Matt Parr’s squad is at full-strength.

Fareham Town: Douglas, Warren, Jones, Doswell, Birmingham, Smith, Boud, Stevens, Birt, Cuthbert, Tambling, Darke, Cotton, Wilson, Redman, Vickers.