Ben Chenery admits everything appears to be against his injury-ravaged side going into the first league derby with AFC Sudbury since 2010.
But he has said he can promise the Blues’ faithful they will not park the bus in front of the goalmouth at King’s Marsh — and his young side will give it everything they have got.
While his opposite number, Jamie Godbold, is spoilt for choice, though likely to retain faith with the side which clocked up their eighth straight Ryman League victory — a club record at step four level — the Bury Town manager is facing picking a side with what he has left, with up to eight first-team players out.
Among them is captain Phil Weavers (suspended) and experienced heads Justin Miller (work commitments) and John Kennedy (doubtful with a double rib fracture).
Striker or midfielder Sam Reed, who played with now AFC goalkeeper Marcus Garnham the last time the sides met for league points — a 2-0 win for eventual Southern League Division One Central winners Bury at AFC in April 2010 — is ruled out after undergoing surgery on his knee.
Bradley Barber (back), Noel Aitkens (hamstring) and James Paterson (hip) are the others unlikely to play, while Darcy De’ath — a former Sudbury player — has been playing through the pain barrier with a foot injury and may have to finally succumb to it.
Added to the fact they will have to adapt to playing on AFC’s 3G pitch and having not won any of their last four games after a torrid December, Chenery is not hiding away from the size of the task.
“We will have to be at our very best on Saturday,” he said, having not been able to get emergency loan players in.
“If you were to take six first-team players out of Manchester City or any side, they would struggle.”
But that will not mean he will be sending his players, set to be dominated by teenagers, out to merely defend their own 18-yard-box in a damage limitation exercise.
“Their pitch is an advantage to them but it is something we will have to deal with. There will be no excuses from my team though; we will be looking to hit the ground running after the warm-up.
“It will be a tough ask for us with the players missing but we have nothing to lose and will give it everything.”
FORM GUIDE - LAST SIX:
AFC SUDBURY (2ND) W W W W W W
BURY TOWN (8TH) W W L D L L
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