Defensive Doggedness key to Marketmen’s title quest

WELCOME RETURN: Central defender Sam Nunn is back in contention after returning from a recent injury
WELCOME RETURN: Central defender Sam Nunn is back in contention after returning from a recent injury
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Needham Market manager Mark Morsley hailed his defensive bedrock as the Marketmen seized control of the Ryman League Division One North promotion race.

Ahead of hosting Waltham Abbey tomorrow (3pm) Needham made it six wins on the spin with successive 3-1 victories over Brentwood Town and Cray Wanderers last week leaving them five points clear of closest rivals Harlow Town.

And having conceded just three goals in that period and 36 from 39 games in total this season, Morsley was quick to salute his sides’ defensive prowess.

“Historically my teams don’t concede a lot and that is the case with this side,” he said.

“Our record has been phenomenal this season and that is all credit to everyone.

“It is not just the goalkeeper and defenders but right through to the strikers who work so hard as well.

“That solid base has been critically important this season and has given us a great foundation to build on.

“I have centre-halves Sam Nunn and Chriss Hogg fit again but I don’t know if I will be able to get them in my team with Joe Whight and Ollie Fenn playing so well.

"We have to just keep being hard to beat and chugging out results.”

n Needham goalkeeper Shaun Phillips received the Ryman League’s monthly Safe Hands award for the second time this season.

Phillips picked up the accolade in December last year, and was chosen as February’s winner after conceding just three times last month.

n Needham Market’s Academy are holding an Open Information Evening at Brantham Leisure Centre next Wednesday.

For more information call their Academy Director Andy Gould on 07794 432812.