Marketmen on brink of bottom three league spot

TOUGH TIMES: Needham boss Richard Wilkins

Needham Market sit in a precarious position in the Bostik League Premier Division, with the same points as the club in the penultimate spot in the league.

The Marketmen have only secured 12 points from their opening 13 fixtures and lie in 19th (of 24) in the league.

They only sit above the relegation zone due to a better goal difference than the five other teams with the same number of points.

Their latest loss came at the hands of Dorking Wanderers on Saturday, a 3-2 defeat away from home, with summer signing Gareth Heath scoring both goals.

Needham have won three games so far this season, and drawn three — although the arrival of prolific goalscorer Adam Mills from AFC Sudbury has given hope of more goals.

They go into this weekend’s first qualifying round of the FA Trophy at home to Arlesey Town (3pm) on a five-match losing streak in all competitions — which they will hope to overturn as soon as possible.

In last year’s competition, the club beat Wroxham at this stage but exited in the second round qualifying after failing to overcome Harrow Borough.

On Tuesday, October 31, Needham will again be at home, as they host third-placed Billericay Town in the league (7.45pm).

The Essex club, in contrast, are on a winning streak having won their last five league fixtures, while the Suffolk team have not won a league match since the 3-1 defeat of Harlow Town on September 26.

In further club news, assistant manager and head coach Tom Rothery has moved on to become manager of fellow Bostik Premier side Brightlingsea Regent.

The vacancy came about after James Webster left Regent to become Aveley’s manager.

The club said: “We would like to place on record our thanks for all the hard work Tom has given the club and wish him all the best in his first managerial role.”

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