Wokingham & Emmbrook boss Herridge keen to make his side hard to beatBy Lewis Rudd
January 09, 2013
Roger Herridge feels his Wokingham & Emmbrook side need to make themselves “hard to beat” as they look to end a run of three successive league defeats when they travel to Cheltenham Saracens on Saturday.
The Sumas crashed to a surprise 2-1 defeat against Hellenic Premier Division strugglers Abingdon Town at Larges Lane on Saturday, and manager Herridge was unhappy with the way he felt his side gifted the visitors their goals.
The result leaves Wokingham 10th in the table and without a win since the 3-0 success at Highworth Town on Tuesday, November 4, having since suffered defeats to Oxford City Nomads and Binfield before Saturday’s loss.
And as Herridge looks to plot a return to winning ways at Petersfield Park this weekend, he believes it is important his side goes back to basics.
He said: “We need to pick ourselves up. There were a few on Saturday who were a little short on match fitness and there will be a couple back in training who need some air in their lungs this week.
“But we need to get back doing the right things in the right areas and make ourselves hard to beat. We are a young squad and young players can be hazardous at times.
“Look at us on Saturday – we had one or two players missing and we are then looking at others to maybe galvanize us and get us back going, but sadly that didn’t happen.
“We have got to take it on the chin and move on because we have got some real hard games coming up, which starts this Saturday with a tough trip to Cheltenham Saracens.
“I have a lot of time for their manager (Gerry Oldham) and what he is doing over there.
“He is very much like me – got no resources and a lot of young players in his squad, but we go down there and hopefully get back on track again.”
Herridge added that he felt the side missed the presence of captain Dave Bellis and midfielder Nick Bateman on Saturday, as the pair were absent due to suspension and illness respectively.
Both, however, are expected to make the trip west this weekend.
“These two make a massive difference to us,” Herridge said.
“I don’t want to say one or two players are the difference between winning and losing, but these two players are our engine room and are arguably two of the best midfielders in the league.
“Having them back on Saturday should make a big difference.”
Herridge tried to put the recent form in to perspective, saying: “It is a tough old league. We are in 10th, yet two or three wins and we can be fourth or fifth.
“This has been my toughest season in management and I have to say that it has been a real challenge with injuries and we had that problem with unavailabilities.
“We also have young players and things have probably come a bit too early for them, but they are playing really well for us.
“But things have not changed over the last three games. If you look we have a young squad, inexperienced, which is overachieving.
“All things considered it has been really hard, when you consider pre-season, with Sam Whiting breaking his leg and Dan Collier snapping a cruciate.
“Even though we are 10th, the players have been really committed to the cause, as they know it has not been easy with ever changing sides and no real consistency in the starting XI.
“All things considered I am happy, but we could do better, that’s for sure.”