Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Pushing for the Top

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Pushing for the Top

Article excerpt

Byline: Northern League Preview, Anthony Vickers

Billingham Town take on big boys Bedlington Terriers tomorrow aiming to bounce back from their FA Vase heartbreak.

Town plan to respond to their controversial fourth round 4-2 home defeat to Bideford in style by charging up the First Division table.

They aim to repeat last season's spectacular reaction when a third round defeat at Gorleston sparked a sizzling end-of-term surge.

"We knew we had really let ourselves down last year," said Bedford Terrace boss Alan Robinson.

"But we bounced back in style as the lads knuckled down and went on a run of one defeat in 15 to finish in a best ever position of third.

"That is what we have to do again. We let ourselves down against Bideford. We had the chances to kill them off early on but didn't take them then when they scored we were chasing it.

"Now we have to make up for that. We are still in the semi-final of the Durham Cup against Spennymoor and we can still make an impact in the league.

"We have a big backlog of games to make up but if we win them, then we can put ourselves right into the frame."

And in-form Town - 14 points behind second-placed Terriers but with five games in hand - are showing they can compete with the leaders.

Reigning champions Brandon felt the backlash in midweek as Town won 2-0 and before that they thumped third-placed Shildon 4-1 and fourth-placed Jarrow Roofing 3-1.

Before the costly Bideford reverse they had lost just one game in eleven.

"And we have the squad to keep that up if we play to our potential," said Alan.

Martin O'Riordan, Shaun Gregory and Andy Swalwell all return after missing the win over Brandon.

Thornaby take on Chester-le-Street with boss Trevor Arnold demanding the "Big Time Charlies" kick start the season.

After a sizzling eight-match unbeaten run, Thornaby have gone flat and taken just two points from the last five games to get bogged down in mid-table. …

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