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BAKER: WE WILL HAVE TO BE AT OUR BEST

2 months ago By Stevie R

Neil Baker warned his side must find top gear as they prepare to host title-chasing Basford United,

The Blues boss is keen to close the nine-point gap at the top between Town and the top two, Cleethorpes Town and Saturday's visitors Basford United.

“We want to be closer to the top two than the rest,” Baker told The Sentinel.

“This is what we said against Cleethorpes when we got a draw but could have won. It’s an important game because we want to haul them back. We don’t want the gap to be too wide.

“But Basford are the best team I’ve seen in this division. I’ve watched them twice and we will have to be at something like our best to beat team, certainly.”

Basford have taken 27 points from their first 11 games but only drew 1-1 with bottom side Gresley at home on Monday.

Blues record against the Nottingham-based side is poor with three defeats and a solitary draw in four meetings since they joined the EVO-STIK League.

Last seasons clash at Harrison Park ended in a 5-0 victory for the visitors whom most supporters rated as one of the best sides they saw last season.

Baker said: “They have four forwards that would get in most teams and only play two of them, then Laurie Wilson in midfield who has played at a higher level.

“People have told me they have a pretty good budget but you still need to spend it wisely.

“Basically they have all the ingredients you want to be successful at this level; good experience, good players and if they lose players they can bring someone in.”

Baker has had a free mid-week to get on the training ground with his players but will have to nurse a few through to the weekend.

Dan Shelley (thigh strain) is still 10 days or so away from returning to action while winger Sam Grimshaw could be back at around the same time.

Grimshaw hasn’t played since suffering an injury at Buxton in pre-season but has been working with the physio to strengthen his ankle.

Niall Maguire is available again in midfield and it is hoped Jordan Johnson, Niall Green and Joe Kearns will recover from minor knocks.

Updated 09:03 - 15 Oct 2017 by Stevie R

Where next?

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First Alvechurch
League 15:00
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Leek Town Ladies Sutton Coldfield Town
League 14:00
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First Belper Town
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