Home form key as Melford bid to break clear of danger

CRUCIAL RUN: Long Melford boss Jules Mumford
CRUCIAL RUN: Long Melford boss Jules Mumford

Jules Mumford wants to see his Long Melford side show a ruthless streak in front of goal as they begin what could be a pivotal run of three home games within their next four fixtures.

Friday night football comes to Stoneylands tomorrow as ninth-place Haverhill Rovers make the relatively short trip over (7.45pm).

With only one win from their last six Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division games leaving the 15th placed Villagers just two points above the bottom three having played more games than all but one of those below them, Mumford knows they need to start accumulating points fast.

“We need to get some points on the board, especially having three out of four as home games, which would then set us up nicely before Christmas,” said the Melford boss.

A week Saturday sees mid-table Thetford Town visit before a reinvigorated Godmanchester Rovers (14th) visit in between a trip to bottom side FC Clacton.

But Mumford is far from panicking after being delighted with his side’s performance in a slender 2-1 defeat at runaway league leaders Mildenhall Town on Saturday.

“We deserved to get a point out of the game,” he said, despite having had to bring back striker David Lorimer back for a game from Bildeston Rangers with five players unavailable.

Lorimer scored Melford’s only goal in the 87th minute after ex-AFC Sudbury winger Steve Spriggs had put Hall into a 29th minute lead which was doubled in the 68th minute by another ex-AFC, Jacob Brown.

“We are not far away from the bottom three but we are not far away from the top half either,” Mumford added.

“A couple of wins will keep us up there and we are not far away from it.

“If the boys keep playing like they are and we can turn these narrow defeats into wins, we will be fine.”

Goalkeeper Fred Howe played through a thigh injury on Saturday, which was aggravated towards the end of the game, leading to Darren Moyes, who has been struggling with an ongoing calf problem himself, replacing him in the 85th minute.

Howe was already unavailable for tomorrow night’s game, meaning Moyes will deputise, while record appearance holder Ashley Skeggs and Nathan Rowe are both available again to lead the line up front. Hassan Ali, who has impressed since progressing from the reserves after a summer move, is also back in the fray.

“We played Haverhill early in the season (1-1 draw) and they are a really good side, so we know it will be a very difficult game,” said Mumford.