Puritans primed to pounce on any slips

Banbury United's Conor McDonagh goes past Weymouth's Ashley Wells and Calvin Brooks
Banbury United's Conor McDonagh goes past Weymouth's Ashley Wells and Calvin Brooks
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Banbury United boss Mike Ford wants his side to be ready to take advantage of any slip-ups by their play-off rivals.

The Puritans are nine points outside the Evo-Stik Southern League play-offs but Ford is sure points will be dropped by those occupying the top five places.

I’m sure some of those teams will drop points because of that pressure of being in the top five

Puritans bos Mike Ford

He said: “From my time at clubs going for promotion, we’ve always been in the play-off places so I’ve never been in a position to have to chase teams. But I know there is a lot of pressure on the teams above us.

“I’m sure some of those teams will drop points because of that pressure of being in the top five.”

And Ford will be looking for the Puritans to get back to winning ways in Saturday’s premier division clash with St Ives Town at the Banbury Plant Hire Community Stadium.

He added: “St Ives need a couple of wins to stay in the division so that will make it harder for us. But we will need to defend a lot better on Saturday than we did against Weymouth and attack with greater numbers.

“We’ll be working very hard in training this week on our attacking but especially on our defending.

“We still have a lot to play for, we’ve got 12 games to go, we’ve got some new players here so everyone will have to knuckle down. It’s an important time for all of us.

“I don’t want this club to fall into the same trap it did a few years ago which ended up with it being relegated. I’ve got to make sure I keep moving it forwards.

“There will be more new teams in this division looking to challenge next season and if we stand still we will end up dropping like a stone.”