Wilkin pinning his hopes on Williams seeing out season

Brackley Town manager Kevin Wilkin
Brackley Town manager Kevin Wilkin

Brackley Town manager Kevin Wilkin knows his side face a tough task in getting through to the third round of the Buildbase FA Trophy.

Saints entertain Vanarama National League outfit Barrow in Saturday’s second round tie and Wilkin said: “Barrow are in a lowly position but I’m sure they will get out of it with the quality of players they have. They’ve got several coming back from injury and I expect them to be strong on Saturday.

It’s a tie we obviously want to get the job done at the first time of asking given the distance for a midweek replay

Saints boss Kevin Wilkin

“It’s a tie we obviously want to get done at the first time of asking given the distance for a midweek replay. But, if we have to go there, we’ve proved in the past we can cope with that.

“We know it will be tough, Barrow go from back to front very quickly but, if our pitch is back to something like it’s top condition, that should suit us. We got to the last eight last season and lost to the eventual winners so we would like another good run.”

Jack Byrne is still ruled out through injury and has had a scan on his knee but Adam Walker, who came off the bench at Nuneaton Town on Saturday, is back in contention for a starting place.

One player who Wilkin hopes will stay injury-free is top scorer Aaron Williams who has bagged 20 goals already this season. Wilkin remains hopeful the on-loan Newport County striker will stay at St James Park for the remainder of the season.

He said: “There hasn’t been anything during the transfer window which has tempted Aaron away. Finding a replacement would be difficult so we hope Aaron will remain with us for the rest of the season.”

Looking back on Saturday’s 2-0 victory at Nuneaton, Wilkin added: “I’m delighted for the players.

“It was another heavy pitch but this is a very fit group of players. There were lots of top performances, Andy Brown and Lee Ndlovu were really effective up front, especially in the second period.”