Belper Town boss Grant Black: We face a real fight if we want play-off spot

Grant Black believes Belper Town are going to have to scrap their way to a play-off place as they aim to arrest a run of three straight league defeats.

By Mark Duffy
Tuesday, 25th January 2022, 11:23 am
Action from Belper's 4-1 loss to Stamford on Saturday. Photo by Mike Smith.

The Nailers are yet to register a point in 2022 thanks to defeats against Ilkeston Town, Sporting Khalsa and most recently Stamford who won 4-1 at the Raygar Arena on Saturday.

And that’s left manager Black in no doubt that given the relative lack of resources at his disposal, his team will have to work very hard to give themselves a chance of clinging on to the top five place they still hold going into this weekend’s game at eight-placed Bedworth United.

Black said: “We know where we are and it’s going to be a scrap to keep clinging on to the play-offs, as good a start as we made and as good have the runs been that we went on.

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"At this moment in time the strength-in-depth other teams have got is leaving us a little bit short so we just have to keep digging in, dust ourselves down and go to Bedworth on Saturday which is another tough game and hopefully we can get back on another winning run which will keep us in touch with everyone else that’s up there.”

Black was disappointed with Belper’s first-half display against Stamford who were able to score three times and essentially end the game as a contest before the break.

He said: “ They showed the gulf in class there is at this level. We’re fighters and scrappers – that’s how we get our results and we’re never going to be a better team than some of those that are up there.

"In the first-half, the individuals we had on the pitch couldn’t deal with their pace and power and while we could have stopped some of the goals, we also weren’t good enough going forward and didn’t create a shot in the first-half.

"We were missing three or four key players who do a lot of the donkey work for us but the ones that have come in haven’t really stepped up to the plate, especially in the first-half.

"We asked for a reaction at half-time and we got that and dominated the second-half but it was too late and we didn’t test their keeper as much as we were in their box.”