​Carruthers relieved to get first win secured

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​Martin Carruthers admits he was relieved to see his Matlock Town side pick up their first league win of the season against Atherton Colleries on Tuesday night, saying he didn’t think the Gladiators had it all their own way despite the 3-0 scoreline.

An opener from Olly Clark was followed by a brace from star striker Jon Margetts who himself will be relieved to have finally found the net in his fourth competitive game for the Gladiators this season.

Before facing Atherton, Town had picked up just two points from nine, having drawn at home to Bamber Bridge on the opening day and at Morpeth last Saturday, their other game ending in a 3-0 loss at Macclesfield.

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So everyone understood the importance of getting the right result in front of their own fans on Tuesday, and the fans certainly did their best with 691 in the ground, an excellent turnout for a midweek match in the holiday season.

Martin Carruthers oversaw a 3-0 win on Tuesday night.Martin Carruthers oversaw a 3-0 win on Tuesday night.
Martin Carruthers oversaw a 3-0 win on Tuesday night.

“I’m very relieved, the win was much needed,” said Carruthers.

“To get the first win at home, a 3-0 scoreline and a clean sheet is fantastic, particularly after what happened up at Morpeth. I’m delighted we’re up and running ahead of what will be a very important bank holiday weekend.”

Atherton arrived at the Proctor Cars Stadium with a win, a draw and a defeat from their opening three outings and they received praise from the Matlock manager.

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“They looked to be a very good side to me, much better than Bamber Bridge in their possession and rotation. Saul Deeney made a really good save in the first half and I think we went ahead against the run of the play. The lack of a cutting edge let Atherton down.”

Carruthers was happy for Margetts who netted twice after having a lean time of it in the opening three matches.

“I can empathise with Jon, being a striker myself I understand how he must have been feeling. Okay, the first one was a mis-kick and the second one a penalty. When you’re at a new club the hardest goals are the first ones, now he’s off the mark we hope the goals start to flow for him.”

Having fired blanks against Bamber Bridge and Macclesfield, Matlock have scored three times in each of the last two matches although there was more than a tinge of regret with the draw at Morpeth.

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“That was really disappointing and it put added pressure on the Atherton game,” Carruthers added.

“We’ve been better in the last two games going forward although on Tuesday we started well initially before allowing Atherton to come at us. We can’t sit back, especially against a decent team, we’ve got to be on the front foot and be aggressive so we can provide the chances for our forwards.”

So that is likely to be the message ahead of the Bank Holiday matches. Matlock won at both Marine and Stafford last season and repeat results would be just what the doctor ordered.

“We’ll go to Marine and Stafford with a game plan and there’s no reason why we can’t bring home three points in both games. It’ll be undoubtedly a tough weekend though.”

*The Gladiators will be on their travels in the first qualifying round of the FA Cup on Saturday week when they visit fellow NPL Premier Division side Gainsborough Trinity.