Don't panic, urges Farnborough boss DayBy Jon Couch
September 27, 2012
SPENCER DAY has urged the Farnborough faithful not to panic despite seeing his FA Cup hopes fade with a fourth straight defeat on Saturday.
Day watched his side battle bravely against big-spending Eastleigh, only for two soft set-piece goals to shatter the club's hopes of a potential lucrative cup run.
It will not have gone unnoticed either that Boro now lie just one place above the dreaded relegation in Blue Square South with a tough trip to newcomers AFC Hornchurch to come this Saturday.
But despite understandable pessimism surrounding Cherrywood Road after such a run of form, the Boro boss insists there are plenty of positives to draw from.
“I won’t be pressing the panic button,” he said. “Apart from the first 20 minutes against Welling we haven’t been playing badly at all and with a number of injured players we have on the road to recovery, I’m quite pleased with where we are as a club at the moment.
“It’s very tempting to look at the league table and see us down there flirting with the relegation zone, but one win and we could be right up there in the top half of the table, it's that close.
“I was about as happy as I've ever been after the defeat on Saturday. With a restricted squad we've taken on a side who will win the division this year and given a really good account of ourselves.
“It was chalk and cheese top the Welling game and if we can keep that up then we'll be just fine.”
Bit by bit Day’s injury concerns appear to be easing. Goalkeeper Craig Bradshaw is expected to be fit for Saturday despite limping for 75 minutes of the game against Eastleigh with a knee injury, while left-back Oli Treacher, described as a “rock” by his manager, came through 90 minutes despite returning sooner than expected from a calf problem.
The bad news, however, is that captain Alan Inns is not expected to be back in time from his calf strain, while it's still touch and go as to whether on-loan striker Reece Connolly will recover from a knee injury.
As a result, Day is still scouring the loan market for potential cover with Aldershot Town defender Doug Bergqvist, who proved a big hit on loan at the club last season, near the top of the manager's wish-list.
If Bergqvist or another centre back does come in then he will find an allay in defensive partner Dean Inman, who impressed on his first game for the club on Saturday after joining on loan from Hampton & Richmond Borough.
Inman, who Day tried to sign in the summer in a double deal with Dave Tarpey, looked solid throughout at the back but was guilty of pulling down Damian Scannell just after the hour mark which led to Craig McAllister rifling home his second of the match from the penalty spot.
McAllister's first came after just seven minutes when he headed home unmarked from Jai Reason's free-kick from the left.
In fact the visitors might well have further punished a shell-shocked Boro, who were indebted to crucial blocks from Inman and Alfredo Bosch, while Bradshaw made an instinctive save to keep out Tom Jordan's close-range effort.
A rousing spell either side of the break gave the home faithful reason for encouragement until Inman’s error of judgement on a rare Eastleigh attack ensured the uphill climb got steeper.
Battling Boro rallied again, however, and pulled a goal back 17 minutes from the end when Nic Ciardini brilliantly played in Tarpey, who slotted the ball past keeper Jack Dovey with a neat finish in off the far post.
Both the dangerous Tarpey and Dan Bennett stung the palms of Dovey as the hosts pushed for an equaliser but much to Day's frustration, the Spitfires just about clung on.
FARNBOROUGH: Bradshaw, Smith, Treacher, Huggins (Day 68), Inman, Bosch, Bennett, Laidler, Tarpey, Moody (N’Guessan 88), Ciardini. Subs: Salami, Fraser, Merriman, White, Fearn.
Ref: Jake Hillier. Att: 444.