Puritans face examination of play-off credentials

Banbury United's Callum White and Wimbourne Town's Wayne Crutcher tussle for possession at Spencer Stadium
Banbury United's Callum White and Wimbourne Town's Wayne Crutcher tussle for possession at Spencer Stadium

Banbury United have come a long way since their opening day defeat. Just how far we may see this weekend.

The Puritans travel to Swindon Supermarine for Saturday’s Evo-Stik Southern League clash on the back of a five-match winning run.

Whatever the result on Saturday, I know Swindon will see a much better Banbury United side

Puritans boss Mike Ford

Supermarine romped to a 3-0 victory on the opening day at Spencer Stadium but the Puritans are a different proposition now. They occupy the final Division One South & West play-off position, two places above Supermarine.

Manager Mike Ford is determined his players treat the game just like any other and said: “It’s just another game and we will treat it that way. It won’t be any bigger than the Wimborne game or more important and that’s what we will tell the players.

“They just happen to be around us in the table, we’ve just got to go there, perform and hopefully get a good result. I’m a great believer in that you don’t have to beat the teams around you.

“If you beat the other teams you are going to finish in a good position.

“Whatever the result on Saturday I know Swindon will see a much better Banbury United side. But I don’t want to build this game up to be any more important that a game against any other team.”

Following Saturday’s trip to Swindon, United entertain Marlow on Tuesday then the going gets tougher in December.

If the Puritans are still in the play-offs by the turn of the year then supporters can start thinking about a serious promotion push in the second half of the campaign.