Triples strikers target for table-topping Hucknall Town

Hucknall Town manager Andy Graves
Hucknall Town manager Andy Graves
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Title-chasing Hucknall Town will continue their attempts to bolster their striker department ahead of Saturday’s CML South game at Matlock Town Reserves (3pm).

Boss Andy Graves has made approaches for three different players and is hoping one or two of them will sign.

However, he admitted his main target may price himself out of their capabilities.

“There is plenty happening – it’s non-stop. But nothing is finalised,” said Graves.

“One target is way out of our price range. But I have two other big, big irons in the fire.

“One lad is training with us and if agrees to sign, whether we can do that in time for Saturday remains to be seen. “We’d have to do a transfer as he has played for a reserve team in our reserve league.

“He is a young player with proven pedigree from a higher club who needs games. I have seen him play and I’d love to get it sorted. But we may have to be patient.

“I’ve spoken to another striker as well.

“If we get one out the three I’ll be happy. If we get two out of the three, I’d be more than happy. It could be quite exciting.”

Graves has not yet given up on his main target.

“It’s not dead and buried but I have just asked the player to be realistic,” he said.

“I think we can do what he wants to get out of it but the club can’t afford the sort of money he is talking about.

“It is what it is. If it’s a football ambition, he couldn’t join a better club. But if it’s money that’s not the way we work.

“Regardless of what people think this club does not pay money.”

Earlier this season Hucknall hammered Matlock 6-0. But since then the Derbyshire club has climbed to fifth in the table, 10 points adrift of the table-topping Yellows.

“I don’t think they’ve lost many since we last played them so we know this isn’t going to be an easy game. It will be a good test,” said Graves.

“They have certainly improved. But on that day I think we took our chances.

“I can remember watching that game from my holiday in Spain and it wasn’t straightforward. I think the score was slightly flattering towards us and a bit hard on them.

“They are a good, young team. Obviously their first team play at a high level, so they are not just a bunch of lads thrown together. They’re there for the future and they are learning all the time.

“They are technically good, enthusiastic, and they have the exhuberance of youth, which you have to be careful of. It’s not going to be easy.”

After a third win on the bounce, 3-1 away at Aslockton & Orston two weeks ago, Hucknall were left kicking their heels without a fixture once again last weekend, though remain top, three points clear.

Graves said: “It was a blank weekend for us last weekend, but what players were eligible for the reserve cup played, so one or two at least got a run-out. And everyone will be training tonight.

“It is frustrating as we wanted to keep that momentum going and just keep putting the points on the board if possible.

“We know Sherwood clawed a few back the other night, Pinxton were damaged a little bit, but Eastwood won.

“We have the points up there still though the margin is a little narrower than it was.

“They have still got to win their games. Likewise we’ve got to keep winning to keep the pressure on. There is a long way to go yet.

“Weather-permitting we will play at Matlock on Saturday and we are hoping it’s on.”