Gladiators climb into third place

Having won four out of their last five league matches, Mark Atkins’ Matlock Town now find themselves up in third spot, and Atkins says he wants his side to go all out for more wins.

“We’re playing to a good standard at the minute with four wins out of five. We’ve got to try and win games, it’s no use going for draws, so I’ll be looking for more of the same great attitude from the players in the games to come,” Atkins pledged as he prepares his men for two more tough clashes against fellow promotion rivals.

And revenge for earlier league defeats should be in the Matlock squad’s minds as Saturday’s visitors to the Reynolds Stadium, Worksop Town, inflicted a first away defeat on Matlock by a 2-1 margin in October, before on Tuesday the Gladiators travel down the A38 to Chasetown, mindful of a controversial refereeing performance from Mark Jones in the 4-3 home reverse to the Scholars last September.

Matlock followed up a hard-fought 1-0 win at Frickley on Saturday with an equally hard earned 2-1 home success against North Ferriby, the results and performances in both wins cheering Atkins.

The one black mark on the pitch was the dismissal of Gareth Davies for an alleged head but on Chris Bolder against North Ferriby.

Atkins said: “Gareth reckons he never did anything but nevertheless he’ll now have a three-match ban which isn’t ideal with our small squad.”

The North Ferriby tie attracted Matlock’s lowest gate of the season as just 224 hardy souls braved a cold night.

Chairman Tom Wright and Atkins said they were both hoping for a vastly-improved attendance against Worksop and in future games at the Reynolds Stadium.

Atkins said: “The lads are working hard and deserve a good level of support. There’s a lot of people working very hard behind the scenes at this club and I believe the players are replicating that on the pitch so it would be nice to see more people coming through the turnstiles and cheering the team on.’’

Wright said: “224 was disappointing although it was a cold night and North Ferriby brought hardly anyone down with them.

“I know times are hard financially, but it’s the same for all clubs at this level, Matlock Town included. We’ve vastly improved our facilities with the new stand offering a great comfortable view and work on our new social club is nearing completion. The team are doing very well and as things stand, we’ve got a great chance of reaching the play-offs. Worksop has the makings of being a great game on Saturday, they’ll bring a good following with them so we’re looking to the people of Matlock to come on down and support the club both vocally and financially like they’ve done so many times in the past.”