McLean wants the Humbugs to be more prolific in front of goal

AERIAL CHALLENGE: Joe OHare challenges Diss goalkeeper Lewis Riches for the ball at the weekend
AERIAL CHALLENGE: Joe OHare challenges Diss goalkeeper Lewis Riches for the ball at the weekend

Mark McLean believes it is only a matter of time before his Halstead Town side start to put away their chances in front of goal.

The Humbugs have made a steady start to their 11th straight campaign in the Thurlow Nunn League First Division, with a 3-2 win at Holland FC followed by 1-1 stalemates with March Town United and Diss Town.

FORWARD RUN: Adam Hampson in possession for Halstead on Saturday

FORWARD RUN: Adam Hampson in possession for Halstead on Saturday

Speaking about the opening few weeks of 2017/18, the Halstead boss admitted he had been left both happy and frustrated by his side’s first three games.

But with a home clash against one of the early pacesetters in Whitton United coming up at the Milbank Stadium this Saturday (3pm), McLean is hopeful that the Humbugs can start to make the most of the chances they are creating.

“We made a great start at Holland and showed some great character,” McLean said.

“We’ve then drawn our last two games and they were games which we should have won, we had chances.

IN TROUBLE: Halstead goalkeeper Joe Fowler sees the ball go past him

IN TROUBLE: Halstead goalkeeper Joe Fowler sees the ball go past him

“So I’m happy, but also frustrated as well. It’s unbelievable really, it gets on my nerves (the chances being missed), but I’d rather have those chances than not at all.

“There’s lots to be happy about. It’s been a tough schedule to start but I’m confident, I’m always confident, we’re doing the right things.”

On Saturday, Karl Andrade’s 50th minute lob put the Humbugs in front at Diss, before the hosts equalised five minutes later through Sam Buckmaster.

Andrade, Charlie Baker and Adam Hampson then spurned chances to regain the lead for visiting Halstead, with a tense finale set up when Stephen Vincent was shown a straight red card for Diss with three minutes of normal time to go.

McLean’s side pushed forward to try to take advantage and Hampson looked as if he had snatched the winner, but he was denied by the linesman’s flag as the spoils were shared at Brewers Green Lane.

n On Tuesday evening, Halstead picked up their second win of the season with a 2-1 victory at neighbouring AFC Sudbury Reserves (match report on page 59).

The result has moved McLean’s men up to fifth in the latest table ahead of Saturday afternoon’s home encounter against Suffolk side Whitton United (3pm).

Whitton sit third after winning all three of their matches so far this season, scoring 12 goals in the process.