Matlock Town look to add new faces to squad as injuries add up

Matlock Town manager, Craig Hopkins.
Matlock Town manager, Craig Hopkins.

Joint Matlock Town boss Craig Hopkins admits his side need to bring in some fresh faces.

It comes on the back of two more disappointing defeats for the Gladiators, who gifted goals and chucked away the points Stafford Rangers and Hednesford Town.

It all leads to increased frustration for joint bosses Craig Hopkins and Glenn Kirkwood, who with a lengthy injury list ahead of Saturday’s visit from Lancaster City, look like being on the telephone again bringing in yet more players.

“We’ll need to take stock of who we’ve got available for Saturday at Thursday’s training session when we’ll also need to work hard on our defensive game,” said Hopkins.

“We’ll probably have to get another couple of players in. We’re still talking to players, people ask why loan players are coming in.

“The answer is that they’re the ones more readily available, a lot of players simply don’t want to move at this stage of the season.

“We talk to them and the standard answer is speak to us in the summer. There’s players at league clubs we’ve been excited about then it’s all gone dead.”

He also spoke of his disappointment as Matlock failed to build on their superb win at Farsley.

He added: “On Saturday we played exactly the same team that had done so well at Farsley yet the two performances were like chalk and cheese.

“After that great performance the one at Stafford was as flat as a pancake, sometimes we’re lost for words, it was really poor on Saturday.

“There may have been a very small element of the Farsley game taking something out of them but that’s really no excuse, we lacked any energy and spark and gave away two really bad goals.

“Dwayne (Wiley) was a little unfortunate for the second one as his clearance hit their lad on the shin and went in, but it was an unacceptable performance.”

Captain Adam Yates suffered a broken nose and blacked eyes in a first half clash on Saturday and missed the Hednesford game, and it looks like he might be out for some time.

Then on Tuesday Jake Green pulled out of the warm up with a damaged groin and during the defeat Curtis Morrison pulled a hamstring and Jamie Jackson twisted an ankle. With Joe Doyle Charles suspended and completing his ban this weekend, Matlock look like being without five of their first team squad.

The last two defeats have highlighted that Matlock need more of a physical presence in their side.

“Stafford were a lot stronger than us and you look at Hednesford who’ve got a big strong squad,” said Hopkins. “We need to be much better defensively, more compact, a little more aggressive and a little bit more nasty.

“We’ve given Hednesford all three of their goals, the third one was a calamity after a lack of communication for the second one.

“We’d done alright in the first half, we’d scored a great goal and might have got something from two or three great balls flying across their penalty box, so we’ll have to take the positives from that.

“Seven days earlier we were superb, but a few lads need to be braver and stronger, be ready for the battle, be prepared to fight their way out of this poor patch.”

Matlock are at home again on Tuesday to high flying Warrington Town, although if the Wire draw their FA Trophy tie at Wealdstone on Saturday, the game will be called off with the replay taking precedence.