Wilkin hopes an 'unprecedented' injury crisis will ease for Brackley Town

The depleted Saints grabbed a last-gasp equaliser in midweek as they maintained their title bid in National League North
Brackley Town celebrate their stoppage-time equaliser at Chester on Tuesday night. Picture by Glenn AlcockBrackley Town celebrate their stoppage-time equaliser at Chester on Tuesday night. Picture by Glenn Alcock
Brackley Town celebrate their stoppage-time equaliser at Chester on Tuesday night. Picture by Glenn Alcock

Kevin Wilkin has praised his depleted Brackley Town squad for continuing to battle on during what he described as an “unprecedented” injury crisis.

The Saints have maintained their lofty position in the Vanarama National League North over the past week as they followed up a 3-2 home win over Farsley Celtic last weekend with a 1-1 draw at Chester on Tuesday night as a stoppage-time own-goal from Simon Grand secured another point for Brackley.

Not for the first time this season, Wilkin was only able to name two outfield substitutes for the midweek clash with a long list of key players including Matt Lowe, who scored twice in last Saturday’s victory, Tre Mitford, Connor Franklin, Jordan Richards and Fabio Lopes all being ruled out through injury.

Brackley go into this Saturday’s trip to Gloucester City level on points with leaders Gateshead with the Tynesiders sitting on top on goal difference.

But Wilkin is just hoping the injury problems will start easing.

“We could only name two outfield substitutes on Tuesday night and there are people playing outside of that with knocks as well,” the Brackley boss said.

“Fair play to the boys. They have had a go. We managed the game well in the first half but never got going in the second half to be honest.

“But they keep going, that’s what they do. And, in the end, it’s not a bad away point all things considered.

“It really would help us to get a few back from injury if I am being honest, that’s the biggest concern.

“We have had it on a couple of occasions now against Kettering at home and now at Chester where we have only been able to name a couple of outfield substitutes.

“There is depth about our squad but with so many injured, it’s an unprecedented period we are facing at the moment.

“But, such is the spirit in the camp, we want to get out there and have a go. And while they maintain that sort of attitude, it gives us a chance.”

Wilkin, meanwhile, is wary of this weekend’s opponents.

Gloucester were fancied by many to be right in the shake-up at the top end of the table this season but they have struggled and currently sit third from bottom and just three points clear of the sole relegation spot.

“They are another big club who probably aren’t having the season they would have hoped for,” Wilkin added.

“It’s another reminder of how many big clubs there are at this level and how very competitive it is.

“It’s another tough game, they are all tough and we have done well so far. Hopefully we can go there and get something.”