Trip to Redditch on Monday evening
Dave Stringer’s Rugby Town return to action following a twelve day break on Saturday, with Uxbridge the visitors to Butlin Road.
Despite last weekend’s inactivity, Town remained third in the Calor League Central Division, and Stringer is understandably happy with recent progress.
He said: “Things are going well at the moment. We’ve got six straight league wins under our belts and we’re looking in good form and focused on the job.
“It’s unfortunate that we had to sit last weekend out, as we lost the opportunity to build on the recent momentum. However we’ve trained hard in the meantime and also managed to fit in a practice game at Nuneaton yesterday (Wednesday) in an attempt to keep things sharp.”
Stringer was hoping to add another new face ahead of the Uxbridge game, as he continues to look to improve his squad.
He continued: “We’ve brought in Ashley Spencer, Mitchell Piggon and most recently Josh O’Grady to bolster things up, in addition to the arrival of Ady Fuller into the backroom team.
“Ady’s arrival as my assistant is a big boost and it has allowed me to move Tony Clarke into more of a coaching role – which suits him too.”
Two of the recent signings have already made impacts, with wide-man O’Grady scoring on his full debut at Beaconsfield last time out, and - whilst yet to start a league game - striker Piggon has also already managed to open his Town account along with four major goal assists.
However Spencer has yet to feature in a Rugby shirt as he continues his rehabilitation from tendonitis in his knee, but Stringer reports that the midfielder should be back in action soon.
He added: “Ashley isn’t too far away now, and Sam Belcher is also back in training again, which is great news, as he was such an important player for us last season.”
Following their midweek 5-2 home defeat to St.Ives, Saturday’s opponents Uxbridge are currently 11th in the table – the same place they finished at the end of last season.
Valley will be looking to maintain their excellent record at Butlin Road against the Middlesex club. With successive 4-0 victories in 2011 and 2012, Town then coasted to six goal lead last time out – before two late Uxbridge strikes ruined the perfect stats.
Predictably Rugby’s David Kolodynski was on target in that 6-2 win in February, and the marksman’s recent good form in front of goal has seen him notch six times in the last four outings.
Spencer and Belcher aside, Stringer confirmed that he should have a full squad to choose from for Saturday’s fixture – barring any injuries arising from the Nuneaton friendly.
# Rugby are also in action next Monday (11th) in the 2nd round of the Southern League Cup, when they travel to Redditch.
The tie represents their second knockout game against the Worcestershire club this season, with the two sides having already met in the Birmingham Senior Cup – when Town progressed thanks to a 5-4 penalty shoot-out success.
# Valley’s near neighbours Daventry Town have a big weekend ahead of them, when they travel to Football League Division Two Chesterfield in the first round proper of the F.A.Cup.
Having also reached for the third qualifying round of the FA Trophy following a midweek replay victory, Daventry certainly are the form team of the division so far with just a single defeat and eight wins from their league campaign to-date.
Stringer wished his local rivals well ahead of the biggest game in the club’s history: “They have had an amazing start to their season and good luck to them at Chesterfield.
“We didn’t do ourselves justice against them at Communications Park earlier in the season though, and we will be out to put that right in the return the fixture on Boxing Day.
“Despite Daventry’s strong start, I still think it’s a wide open division this season and there are a number of teams who will believe they can win it.
“However we know that on our day, there isn’t a side that can come close to us from a pure footballing perspective. So if we can eliminate the silly goals that we are occasionally prone to, then there is no reason why we can’t go one better than last season.”