Callum Waters | 1874 Northwich F.C.

Paul shares us his thoughts on the early season and looking ahead

After a difficult August, 1874 start September’s action away at Newcastle Town this Saturday. With the bank holiday providing no rewards for two defensively solid performances, co-manager Paul Bowyer is hoping to see some improvements in 1874’s attacking fortunes at the weekend.

“We both can’t remember a game where we’ve given the ball back to the opposition as much as we did at Prescot and although slightly better on Monday against Nantwich, we’re making too many errors in possession and haven’t found our rhythm. “

“When our standards drop in possession, we’re unable to get up the pitch and the balls keep coming back.”

“We should have scored more against Stalybridge and Chasetown, missing some clear chances and the pleasing thing in these games is we were getting into good positions. We’ve not created as much in the past couple of games and this is something we need to work on and improve.”

“I’ve read a lot about our centre forward situation and you could have all the forwards you want but we need to be better with the ball or we won’t find them.”

Despite 74 struggling to find the net in recent games, Bowyer was pleased with the defensive efforts, showing huge improvements from the beginning of the season.

“As a team we’ve looked solid and Ellis has had a minimal amount to do in both games. He’s made a couple of good saves and we’ve got bodies in the way and looked dogged, combatting the threats of Both Nantwich and Prescot.”

Looking ahead to Newcastle Town, Bowyer spoke about the strength of teams in the division, and expects another tough test on Saturday in search of 74’s first 3 points of the season.

“As last season I think anyone can beat anyone in the league. There’s no excuse over who we’ve played- there’s no easy games and we need to be better to win games. It’s too early to say who the top and bottom teams will be in the league this season but we do need to capitalise on others not playing this weekend.”

“They’ve (Newcastle) made a number of good signings this season and obviously had a couple of great wins over the weekend. It’s always been a tough place to go with it being so open and I’d expect them to put the ball on us as much as possible and make us defend. They’re strong on set plays and tough to break down so we need to be at it from the start on Saturday and play on the front foot.”

Nicholson, one of 74’s forward minded players, missed the bank holiday fixture against Nantwich, but looks set to return at the weekend.

“Siyam will be unavailable for a couple of weeks while he’s away. We may have an additional player onboard in the next week. Jack Irlam is still feeling his groin so we’ll assess him ahead of Saturday game. Jamie Nicholson is feeling better after resting a slight knee injury so should be in contention for Newcastle.”

Wayne’s thoughts on the weekend double header

Co-manager Wayne Goodison is striving for consistency as 1874 head into a double header this bank holiday weekend.

After a 6-2 defeat at home on the opening day of the season, the greens have responded with 2 draws against strong opposition.

“For us as a squad and one with a number of young players and lads playing at this level for the first time, it is important to learn lessons as we go.”

“The only difference in the opening day performance was some of things out of possession which we got wrong, which the players recognised and rectified.”

“As long as we can now be consistent with those aspects of our play, we can hopefully keep working hard to improve other parts.”

1874 conceded first on Tuesday, and Wayne was quick to hail the players near immediate response.

“Conceding the penalty was disappointing, so the response was needed, and I think fully merited on the night. We felt afterwards that we had matched a very good side all over the pitch.”

Looking forward to the weekend, Wayne and the team are fully focused on the Prescot fixture, before a first league meeting with Nantwich Town on Monday in a Cheshire derby.

“We have had both watched and as with all teams in this league, they have a lot of qualities that we will need to respect, but then we also feel that we can implement things that may cause them issues. We will look at a few things in training tonight and prepare fully as we always do.”

“One or two are carrying slight knocks etc so we will no doubt need to freshen the starting 11 over the next two fixtures.”

Paul’s review of Saturday’s result and looking ahead

Co-manager Paul Bowyer “expects to see a reaction” at Stalybridge tomorrow, after a disappointing opening to the league campaign on Saturday.

1874 were second best across most areas on Saturday, and were outclassed by a well organised and clinical Kidsgrove side. Afterwards, Bowyer spoke of the teams disappointment with the result. 

“We’re all disappointed with Saturday’s result and performance. We actually started the game quite well and scored a good goal but then stopped doing the things we’re good at and were second best in the physical battle. Too many had an off day and we gave away some poor goals.”

Looking ahead to tomorrow night, Bowyer expects a “stern test” against Stalybridge, but is keen to put things right as quickly as possible. 

“Stalybridge picked up a really good win on Saturday at Hanley and like ourselves are another side full of new faces who will be looking to build on this.”

“We expect to see a reaction and it’s good we’ve got a game on Tuesday to put things right. We’ve worked on things in preseason and expect to see more of that and people standing up to the challenge and being better with and without the ball.” 

Bowyer was also keen to praise the away support from the fans in recent seasons, and asked for this to continue into Tuesday. 

“The support has always been good especially away from home. It would be great to see you at Stalybridge in your numbers and get behind the lads. It was good to see your support for the players after Saturdays game even after the result and I know the players are keen to pay it back.”

Wayne’s thoughts ahead of league opener

After an early exit in the FA Cup, we turn our attention to the league season opener in our 10th competitive season as a club. 

In our last two seasons at this level, we have shared the spoils with our opponents, and co-manager Wayne expects it to be another difficult opener against Kidsgrove on Saturday.

“Kidsgrove have spent money in the summer to improve their squad and I think they should expect to be at the top end of the table with the quality of player they have brought in. 

“It is generally a good contest between our two sides and a contrast in styles so I expect it to be the same on Saturday.

1874 are looking to bounce back from defeat in the FA Cup, where despite creating several chances, Wayne spoke about the lack of ruthlessness to put them away. 

“There were a lot of things around last Saturdays performance that we were happy with, though obviously we were all ultimately disappointed with the outcome. 

““After analysing the HUDL data, that we get back after every game it was interest to see that we had 14 attempts at goal (this includes efforts blocked, off target and on target) 26 crosses and 7 corners, so we all know that this is an area that we need to keep working at to convert some of those situations and indeed at key times, make better decisions.

Looking ahead to the season, 1874 and co managers Wayne and Paul will look to make improvements on last years finishing position.

“Our aims every season is to try to improve on the previous season, that’s no different this time around. We also want to improve as individuals and to be competitive in every game that we play.”

Match tickets are priced at £10 adults, £6 concessions and 12-17 year olds for £1. 

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