KITTRICK'S COMMENT: Shaw Lane trip will be big test

Steve Kittrick's weekly column
Steve Kittrick's weekly column

There’ll be a few familiar faces on show when we travel to Shaw Lane in the FA Trophy on Saturday.

Their manager Craig Elliott used to play for me, so he’ll know all about how I like to set my teams out and I know a lot of their lads well.

Shaw Lane manager Craig Elliott used to play under Boro gaffer Steve Kittrick

Shaw Lane manager Craig Elliott used to play under Boro gaffer Steve Kittrick

Gavin Allott is a big, 6ft4 striker who is almost unplayable when he is at his best, and our fans will no doubt remember Ryan Qualter.

Ryan is a quality defender who we tried to sign this season, but couldn’t match what Shaw Lane offered him, which shows you the money they’re putting into their side this season.

They’re up in second in the Evo-Stik South Division, so this will be not only be a big test for us, but also a good marker as to the strength of the South and North divisions.

The guys played well in the first half at Droylsden, but we were poor after half-time and once again defensive naivety and poor game management cost us.

If we want to go to a place like Shaw Lane and get the win, we’ll have to do it for 90 minutes, not just turn it on in patches.

This will be a good test of how far we’ve come as a side and how we are progressing as a unit as we’re a new team and we’ve had horrific injury problems.

I don’t think I’ve ever had so many key players out than I have at Scarborough.

We tried to bring a few lads in during the week to compensate for the lads we have out - but the honest truth is they don’t want to travel unless you pay them big money.

One thing I don’t want to do is pay over the odds for lads, and I won’t do that.

If you look at the quality we have on the injury table, it makes you think that if we can keep pace with the top five or six in the division, then we’ll have a great chance of pushing on in the new year when we are hopefully near full strength with the likes of Dean Lisles, Liam Ormsby, Craig Nelthorpe and Paul Robson back in.

We still have a lot of quality on our side though and we go to Shaw Lane confident of beating them.

They may have a top striker in Allott, but Benny Igiehon is just as good when he’s in form, so there’s no reason why we can’t go there and get the win.