REDDITCH United manager Liam McDonald was in buoyant mood after watching his side score a sensational 16 goals in two league and cup games.
The Reds ended a six-game winless streak in the Southern League Premier Division with a crushing 7-1 win at Slough Town on Saturday before following it up with a 9-2 demolition of Bishops Cleeve in their Red Insure Cup first round tie at the Valley Stadium on Monday.
Attacking duo Ashley Sammons and Jermaine Hylton proved their undoubted worth to the team as they scored ten goals between them in the two matches and McDonald was upbeat about his side’s chances of maintaining their new-found momentum when they host Bideford on Saturday before visiting Chippenham Town on Tuesday.
Hylton has only just returned from injury and Sammons from suspension, but their understanding was there for all to see as they ran riot over the two games, with Sammons netting a hat-trick in the league victory and Hylton bagging four goals in the cup rout.
“It has been a tough past month or so for us, no doubt, but I was never panicked about our situation,” said McDonald.
“Ash (Sammons) and Jermaine (Hylton) have been key absentees for us and we’ve also been without several other players who offer us so much in the attacking element of the game.
“However, it has been good to see other players get a chance in the team and that was always the plan were we to suffer injuries and suspensions. That’s the model of the club at the moment – to give Reserves and U18 players their opportunities in these situations – and I was always comfortable with this.
“When we were suffering a bit results-wise, I sat the players down for a meeting and explained we would have to tough it out, grab what points we could and wait for some of our big names to come back and get us really firing again.
“Everyone was happy with that message and we’ve done OK lately all things considered. The supporters have, in the main, been understanding of the situation and I thank them for that.
“I was talking to Slough Town’s manager after the match on Saturday and he said it was just their luck that we had Jermaine and Ash available again. That shows what other teams think of us. They know that, especially at full strength, we can do some damage to them and we are confident moving forward now.”
Saturday’s victory lifted the Reds into ninth place and McDonald knows maintaining momentum against Bideford and Chippenham is key ahead of home matches against much-fancied Chesham United and St Neots Town which follow.
McDonald added: “We have done our preparation for Bideford and feel confident that we can prosper against them and Chippenham if we execute our plans well. If we do, that will set us up nicely for the next two games against tough opposition but who we have already beaten away from home this season.
“For now, though, we need to try and take care of Bideford and then we’ll reassess. All I can ask is for the enthusiasm and effort shown lately.
“We scored some tremendous goals on Monday in particular and putting six past any side in one half of football is not to be sniffed at.
“We are in a good position in the league a quarter of the way through the season. I’d have certainly taken this if you’d offered it me at the start of the campaign.”