24th Nov, 2017

Smith: Bromsgrove Sporting must keep pushing on

Craig Gibbons 15th Nov, 2016

BROMSGROVE Sporting boss Paul Smith has urged his side to not take their foot off the gas as they return to Midland League Division One action this weekend.

The Rouslers welcome Stafford Town to the Victoria Ground this Saturday (3pm KO) looking to extend their unbeaten start to the new league campaign to 13 games.

And Sporting go into their game on the back of Sunday’s impressive 3-1 victory over Lichfield City in the FA Vase second round thanks to a brace from Jason Cowley and header from Reece Hewitt.

The result was met with high praise by Smith who said Sporting thoroughly deserved to go through in front of a 747-strong crowd.

“It was a big game for us as it’s a great cup competition to be in so it was always going to be tough for us against a good Lichfield side,” he said.

“I thought we was very, very good first half. We was dominant and deserved the victory in the end.

“I would not say we took our foot off the gas second half because we knew Lichfield would bring something to the table.

“They had a very good five minute spell, zipped a few balls across the box which could have been dangerous but apart from that we rode our luck, grabbed another goal and deserved the win.”

A trip to Nuneaton Griff on Saturday, December 3 now awaits for Smith’s side as they go in search of beating their best ever Vase run in 2014 when they were knocked out of the third round by Thurby Nirvana in a 2-1 defeat.

But despite not having another home tie, the Sporting boss is confident his squad can reach uncharted territory.

“I think both teams will be happy with the draw because we are in the same division,” Smith said.

“We beat them 4-2 earlier this year so it’s certainly a winnable game but it’s a shame it will be away from home especially with the fantastic support we had against Lichfield.

“We’ve missed a few of the big guns including Westfields, Coleshill, Quorn and Long Eaton so we’ve got the chance to progress in the last regional round.”

With Sporting involved in Vase action, they dropped to second in the league table at the expense of Leicester Road who ran out 2-0 winners at Heath Hayes.

However, Smith has urged his squad to focus on themselves and pick up all three points against Stafford.

“I went to watch Leicester Road on Saturday but we have to take care of our own business,” he said.

“No disrespect to Stafford but I’d expect us to be winning at home this weekend.

“We’re playing some good football right now and I’mĀ glad to be back at home in the league.”

Luke Dugmore, Luke Edwards and Jake Willcox are expected to return to action against Stafford while striker Chris Conway is out due to the start of his 12-game suspension for a Sunday football offence.

Meanwhile, Sporting have arranged a friendly against West Midlands Police on Thursday.

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