Chettle happy with response after beating United

Steve Chettle
Steve Chettle

Ilkeston Town boss Steve Chettle was pleased to see his team register three points on Tuesday night as they beat near neighbours Long Eaton United 2-0.

The result followed a disappointing 3-2 loss at home to Lye Town on Saturday, after which Chettle pulled no punches with regard to how poorly his team had performed.

But it was a different story on Tuesday as, despite the game not being of the best quality, the three points and a clean sheet were what mattered.

Chettle said: “I made some changes and wanted a reaction and I think everyone stood up to be counted.

“Chris Shaw came back into the team with Shaun Rickford being away and did well, so it causes me a headache for the weekend once again, while Ryan Wheatley came in at left-back and impressed and Billy Bennett moved into midfield and scored a really good goal.

“I thought we were in total control of the game in the first-half even if we didn’t do too much in their penalty area. We needed to feel our way back into the game after Saturday, so the first-half was a building block for the second-half.”

Chettle also praised the Ilkeston public for turning out in big numbers, with a crowd of 804 the biggest of the season so far by nearly 200.

He said: “It’s fantastic - these are the games we like, namely under the lights, at home in front of a big crowd - it’s the kind of thing the club was set back up for and these local games add more to it.”

Speaking after the defeat to Lye Town on Saturday, Chettle couldn’t hide his dismay at how his team had played.

He said: “We weren’t very good from minute one to minute 94. We spoke at half-time about fixing things but that didn’t have any effect, so a few home truths were dished out at the end.

“Despite leading at half-time we’d been too slow with the ball and didn’t do enough with it.

“There’s no excuses - Lye have taken their chances and gone away with a victory.

“All of Lye’s goals came from mistakes which is symbolic of a lot of what’s happened this season. You can’t legislate for people making mistakes, nor should we have to be scoring three or four goals each week to get a result.”

This weekend sees Ilkeston visit Walsall Wood, the side the Robins battled with for the MFL Division One title last season and who eventually took the honours, although Ilkeston were soon promoted alongside them.

That will be followed by the visit of Coventry United on Monday night in a match that was originally scheduled to be an away game but was switched at the request of the Warwickshire side.

Chettle said: “I’ll watch the Long Eaton game back and see where we may or may not need to change things but once again it will be a tough choice as to who plays and who doesn’t.”

Following the clash with Coventry United, Ilkeston will then face a free weekend before hosting South Normanton Athletic on Bank Holiday Monday at 3pm.