Wilkin expects tough test as the Spireites await Saints

Brackley Town manager Kevin Wilkin
Brackley Town manager Kevin Wilkin

Just as they had to on their way to winning the Buildbase FA Trophy, Brackley Town are having to try to retain it the hard way.

Saints are on the road again for next month’s third round tie at Chesterfield but will fancy their chances against the struggling Vanarama National League outfit.

Chesterfield are obviously not having the season they hoped for but it will still be a tough tie, it was always going to be at this stage of the competition

Saints boss Kevin Wilkin

Kevin Wilkin’s boys came through a tricky second round tie at Hereford on Saturday to book a trip to the Spireites.

Wilkin said: “Chesterfield are obviously not having the season they hoped for but it will still be a tough tie, it was always going to be at this stage of the competition.

“John Sheridan has gone back in, he’s been successful there before and he will be thinking he can be again. They’ll probably look to get this season out of the way, stay up and go on from there.

“We’re down on numbers and it will be difficult to sign players who have not already played in the competition.

“But I’ve got to try and get some players in before then as we’re down to about 13 now and that’s much to small, so I hope to have someone in before the weekend.”

The holders moved into the third round with Saturday’s comprehensive 3-1 win at Edgar Street.

Looking back on Saturday’s success at Hereford, Wilkin said: “I am very pleased with the win and to be in the next round. The strikers worked really hard and I am delighted that they both got goals because that’s what we need from them, that’s why they are in the team.

“We restricted Hereford to long range efforts and one or two tested Danny [Lewis] but he was equal to them. When we created opportunities we took them.”

Saints are now showing more resolve in recent games, especially in defence, and Wilkin is certainly pleased about that.

He added: “We won the game but in the changing room afterwards the lads were still not happy, there was an inquest going on because they want to do better. Scoring three goals away from home is not enough, they want to keep that clean sheet.

“That’s pleasing to see and it’s the spirit we want. It’s five games unbeaten now and hopefully some momentum building for us in the league as well as the cup.”

It is back to Vanarama National League North action for Saints this weekend when they travel to lowly Alfreton Town.

Wilkin said: “Alfreton play a direct game and we’ve got to be able to deal with physical that. From that perspective it’s going to be a tough game so we need to impose our game on them.”