‘Everyone thinks it won’t be them that gets relegated’ - Needham boss Richard Wilkins

PUBLISHED: 15:33 08 January 2018 | UPDATED: 16:30 08 January 2018

Richard Wilkins, the Needham Market boss. Photo: BEN POOLEY

Richard Wilkins, the Needham Market boss. Photo: BEN POOLEY


Needham Market travel to Margate tomorrow night sitting just five places off the one and only relegation position in Bostik Premier.

The Marketmen lost 3-2 at Harrow Borough on Saturday, their second defeat on the bounce. It’s now just one win in nine league games for the Suffolk side.

While far more likely to stay up than get relegated, Needham boss Richard Wilkins knows the team have brought a little bit of pressure on themselves with recent results, if not performances.

“Everyone thinks it won’t be them that gets relegated because only one goes down, but someone has to,” Wilkins said.

“Every team wants to stay in the league.

“Our recent results have brought pressure on ourselves, every mistake we are getting punished for. But our squad is a good squad, we are not playing badly.

“It’s the opposite of last season when I was shaking hands with managers at the end of games and saying they deserved something from the game. Now it’s me they are saying it to.”

Needham face a tough test at a Margate side who gained a creditable point at Billericay on Saturday and are still on the edge of the play-off picture.

The Kent side play on a 3G pitch and Wilkins is expecting to make a few changes.

“I’m not sure John Sands will start,” Wilkins said.

“He’s done terrifically well for us coming back from injury and playing about four games in 11 days. He has a slight knock and I don’t know about starting him.

“Jamie Griffiths is another carrying a bit a knock. He will probably start though.”

Griffiths got both goals at Harrow Borough, where the Marketmen fought back from 2-0 down to level it up, before conceding late on. It was another in a long-line of bitter pills to swallow for Needham this season, as late goals hurt them.

“We are killing ourselves at times,” Wilkins added.

“I don’t think Danny Gay has had a save to make in the second half at Harrow, but individual mistakes have cost us. At this level you will be punished.”

After tomorrow night’s game, Needham have a big match at home to Kingstonian on Saturday.

Meanwhile Leiston travel to Wingate & Finchley tomorrow night.

Glenn Driver’s side will be looking to bounce back after defeat to Leatherhead on Saturday.

Victory would see the Blues leapfrog back into the play-off positions.


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