New Hucknall Town bosses have full squad to select from at last ahead of Lincoln United trip
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With injuries and suspensions easing and three new signings bedding in, joint boss Louis Bland is hoping the Yellows can now start to climb the league after last weekend's improved display in a 2-1 defeat at high-flying Melton Town.
“With Aaron Short and Dillon Rawson back from suspension this weekend we have a fully fit squad to pick from barring any illness or injuries picked up in training,” he said.
“That means Reece (joint boss Limbert) and I have some tough decisions to make just to name a squad. So for the first time since we’ve come in, we have the options to do what we feel is best for this game.
“The games definitely don’t get any easier with our trip to Lincoln United.
“They will be in the top two no doubt as they’ve kept the large majority of their team from last year, where they were playing Step 4, and added players who were the best at this level last year.
“I know Chris Funnell (Lincoln’s manager) and he’s got a way of playing and we will have to be ready for that.
“I know the majority of their players too and they have real quality all over the pitch. We’ve got all the information we need on them and will be ready for the test ahead.”
Ayeal Dil headed an equaliser for Hucknall at Melton just before the break from a Jamie Crawford cross. And Joe Ashurst hit the post before the whistle blew. But Melton's winner came six minutes after the break and Bland said: “It was another disappointment of a result, but in terms of a performance it was really positive.
“First half we were excellent and caused loads of problems. We were forced into a half-time change and for some reason lost our way in the second half and went a little more direct than we wanted, but again it’s something to build on.
“Saturday also saw debuts for Mason Rowley, Harry Johnson and Marley Okoth who I thought all showed why we brought them in.
“Rowley and Johnson started and looked good throughout and Okoth came on when Whiles sustained a head injury and looked composed when was involved.
“Again the fans' support on Saturday at Melton was brilliant. It doesn’t go unnoticed from the players or the staff and we are so grateful for it. We outnumbered the home fans last week and we would love to do similar this weekend.”
The club will be holding a fund-raising craft and gift fair at the RM Stadium on Saturday (10am-3pm) with local and East Midlands artisans selling their wares ahead of Christmas.