After the departure of a few key players, Ilkeston manager Kevin Wilson has strengthened the club’s firepower with the signing of Eddy Samba, a former Leicester City scholar, and 20 year old Bradley Fortnam-Tomlinson from Grays Athletic.
The latter, a lightning-paced Northern Ireland U19 international, could, with Samba, put away the goals to shoot the Robins into the Conference North.
With new faces coming in, rivalry follows and the players will be keen to book a place in the starting line-up, and playing for the right to wear the shirt will spur on players to prove to the staff why they are first choice.
Is it a true assumption that your team is only as good as your strikers?
I like to think that every player is capable of scoring, but in reality this is just not the case.
It’s all well and good having 90 per cent possession and the best defensive record in the league but if you don’t put the ball in the back of the net you are not going to win anything.
Every man on that pitch will want to score but they have to take responsibility for the position they have been allocated while making the right decision at the right time.
Having an out-and-out goalscorer will win games and having someone to rely on and aim for is a real asset to any club.
As the Robins see Che Adams, Kieran Wallace, Kane Richards and Ashley Hunter move on to higher-rated clubs, will this have an effect on the moral in the dressing room?
I am sure others will step up and fill the voids and when Ilkeston progress through to the next tier it will be a true testament to the fighting spirit and eagerness to win installed within the players.
It’s not an easy task building a stairway when your supporting blocks are being taken away. Can Ilkeston FC keep this outstanding progression going while introducing the young talent to the Football League?
The proof will be in the pudding and we’ll see where they finish come the end of the season. It will not be an easy task and there’s a lot of hard work to do, but as they take an undefeated run of 16 games into the next match against Blyth Spartans tonight (Monday), I still remain hopeful and believe that the new signings will turn their run of draws into wins for the Robins.
Blyth Spartans’ recent FA Cup run was stopped in the third round by Birmingham City, and making it that far in the romantic competition shows that they are a strong, resilient side and they’ll be looking to win the battle with Ilkeston at the NMG.