Lee Bradbury has challenged his Hawks to get back on track with a first Skrill South away win of the season at Bishop’s Stortford tomorrow (3pm).
The boss insists it is important to bounce back after the disappointing 2-1 home defeat at the hands of Tonbridge Angels.
It was the first reverse of the season for the Hawks and the first time in the opening four games they had conceded a goal.
‘We have only had one poor 45 minutes so far, so it is not all doom and gloom,’ said Bradbury.
‘I told the players after the game they are not going to go all season without getting beat.
‘It is how they react to it that is important.
‘We have trained three times this week and worked hard at putting things right.
‘For the first time this season we looked vulnerable at the back and were not our usual solid selves.
‘Their first goal was a poor one to concede and hopefully we can make sure it doesn’t happen again.’
The Hawks have been excellent on the road so far – with outstanding 0-0 draws at Ebbsfleet and Eastleigh.
Both those opponents are highly fancied to challenge for the title, so the draws must be regarded as good results.
In both games the Hawks restricted their opponents to very few shots on target.
Bradbury wants to see his side aim for the same against Bishop’s Stortford, who return after a season in the north division.
It won’t be easy because the hosts are a big, strong and well-organised outfit who pass the ball well.
Bradbury may hand Nic Ciardini and Perry Ryan starts after they came on at the start of the second half against Tonbridge.
Ciardini gave them an increased physical presence, while Ryan was typically energetic performance.
Bradbury also has Pedro Monteiro and Eddie Hutchinson who can play in front of the back four to add greater resilience.
Monteiro showed at Eastleigh the fine job he can do in that role.
‘Pedro, with all his experience, has shown what a calm, collected influence he is,’ said Bradbury.
‘He has been a bit unfortunate to find himself out of the team.’
Although they have been sound defensively, the Hawks are still to score a goal away from home.
In the last away game they used Dennis Oli as a single target man up front, with Sahr Kabba on the bench.
Bradbury has to decide whether to return to that tactic or use the pace of Kabba alongside Oli to try and hurt their hosts.
‘I am looking for us to be more ruthless and take our chances,’said Bradbury.
‘We will travel in a positive frame of mind.
‘We are looking to pick up a first away win.’