18th Sep, 2019

Harris challenges Reds squad ahead of gruelling schedule

Liam Moakes 29th Mar, 2018

REDDITCH United manager Tim Harris admits four games in seven days will be a tough ask for his squad, but he is looking to the players to ‘roll up their sleeves’ and be inspired to challenge the leading sides in the Southern League Premier Division.

On Saturday (3pm), the Reds travel to Chesham United before entertaining leaders, Hereford at the Trico Stadium on Easter Monday (3pm). Royston Town and Weymouth also make the trip to Redditch on Wednesday, April 4 and Saturday, April 7 respectively.

Despite a congested schedule – all against top-half opposition – Harris said he and the players must accept it and treat the matches as a “great opportunity to show what we are capable of”.

He added: “We have just got to get on with it. There is no point in complaining about the schedule and, looking at it positively, there are some huge tests coming up and, hopefully, we can improve our league position (15th).

“Chesham are a side that have scored 74 league goals this season, while Hereford, the team that I expect to go up as champions, are expected to bring more than 1,500 fans to the Trico, so these are wonderful occasions to be part of.”

Harris said all members of the squad will be utilised for the hectic run, including the likes of Andy Morrell, Jordan Mills and possibly Aaron Birch, all of whom missed out on a place in the squad on Saturday, but Louis Ezewele, who is returning from a hamstring injury, will be nursed in gently.

Redditch go into the run of fixtures on the back of a narrow home defeat to another promotion hopeful – second-placed King’s Lynn Town. Former Barnet, Kidderminster Harriers and Cambridge United forward Michael Gash scored the only goal to secure a 1-0 victory for the Linnets.

However, despite the Reds forfeiting their unbeaten 2018 home record, Harris was happy with his side’s display.

“We could easily have got something out of the game, but King’s Lynn probably shaded it. Nevertheless, our performance was good. In the first half, in particular, we restricted an experienced opposition to few chances and we probably had the best opportunity just before half-time.

“I thought we were committed, organised and disciplined and, while losing the game is always disappointing, I couldn’t fault the players and I was not too downhearted.

“They are a great bunch of lads who are willing to improve and are buying into what we, as a football club, are trying to achieve.

“That will put us in good stead between now and the end of the season and hopefully beyond that.”

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