'The Bull' ready to help Robins' charge
Friday 12 October
Ilkeston FC manager Kevin Wilson is weighing up whether to unleash ‘The Bull’ on Stocksbridge Park Steels tomorrow.
We go into the New Manor Ground clash – which will feature special admission offers as part of national Non-League Day – in excellent form after FA Cup and FA Trophy successes against Belper, Stourbridge and Gresley.
It leaves Wilson (pictured) with some interesting selection posers, particularly up front, with new signing Jordan Smith - whose powerful physique has earned him his apt nickname – now available after being cup tied last weekend, but Daryll Thomas and Aaron Hooton having both netted last time out in the 4-2 victory over the Moatmen.
Smith, who grabbed six goals in nine games before his switch from Stamford at the start of the season, is desperate to get involved, but Wilson is remaining tight-lipped over whether the 24-year-old will be handed his first start.
“I can’t say what I intend to do with Jordan, you’ll have to wait until just before the game to find out, but what I can promise fans is that he will get game time at some point,” said Wilson.
“We have already seen a benefit of him being at the club in that he has spurred on the others and long may that competition for places continue.”
Smith has been impressed by what he has seen in training and from the sidelines since linking up with us and is keen to help keep the recent momentum going.
He is disappointed not to be able to participate in the FA Cup run but is willing his new team-mates to emulate his journey to the first round proper that he made while in Corby’s colour’s last season.
“We got through to play Bristol Rovers and there was a crowd of almost 4,000 there. We lost 3-1 in the end, but it was still an amazing experience and one of the most memorable matches in my career so far.
“Even though I wouldn’t be able to play myself, I would love for the players to get to experience what that’s like as well. It will be a tough game at Fylde next weekend, but everyone starts equal in the FA Cup and we have a real chance.
“But the league is important and we have to take care of games in that first. If we can put a few wins together then the League table will soon look a lot different.”
We will still be without experienced trio Gary Ricketts (ankle ligaments), Russell Cooke (thigh) and Laurie Wilson (shoulder) against Stocksbridge.
Admission is free to women and under-16s accompanied by an adult, £1 for students and members of the armed forces with relevant ID and £5 for Football League season ticket holders.
• The October draw for the 100 Club will be made at half-time of the Stocksbridge game with the first prize a carvery for two at the Newdigate Arms, Kirk Hallam. Phone Nigel Harrop on 07402 758855 for details on how to join.
• We host Burton Albion for a Central Conference game at the New Manor Ground on Monday at 11am.