Puritans prepared for double challenge

Banbury United's Darius Browne challenges Mangotsfield United's Lewis Shipp
Banbury United's Darius Browne challenges Mangotsfield United's Lewis Shipp

Banbury United’s excellent unbeaten Evo-Stik Southern League run will be severely tested in two away games in the space of five days.

The Puritans travel to Winchester City for Saturday’s Division One South & West clash before making the short trip to long-time leaders North Leigh on Wednesday.

Some people were here for the first time so I hope that will entice them to come back

Puritans boss Mike Ford

But United are in confident form after Saturday’s 3-1 success against Mangotsfield United in front of a big crowd.

Manager Mike Ford said: “We’re on a decent run in the league. It was a great day for the club, a big crowd, a good performance and we scored three goals.

“Some people were here for the first time so I hope that will entice them to come back.

“I didn’t think our first half performance was that special but I know we’ve always got goals in us.

“In the second half they had more of the ball and we had to dig deep at times but we still looked dangerous on the break.

“I also want to keep clean sheets so it was very disappointing to give the goal away after the break.

“But of course I would have taken a 3-1 victory at 3pm, Mangotsfield are a good side with a good budget.”

Ford was encouraged by the performance of new signing George Nash, who came straight into the midfield in place of the suspended Ollie Stanbridge.

He added: “George Nash did very well and grew as the game went on. It’s difficult for a young player coming into a new environment and his role for us is different to the one he had at Worcester City.

“Now it’s up to Ollie Stanbridge to get himself back into the starting line-up because competition places is very important for us.”