Early ‘six pointer’ in store as Ilkeston head to Corby

Luis Rose in action against Stourbridge last weekend. Photo by Craig Lamont.
Luis Rose in action against Stourbridge last weekend. Photo by Craig Lamont.

Paul Holland says this weekend’s trip to Corby Town will be something of an early season six pointer as Ilkeston FC aim to climb off the bottom of the league.

The Robins remain on four points, albeit only from seven games, following Tuesday night’s loss at Rushall Olympic which in turn came after an FA Cup defeat to Stourbridge on Saturday.

And Holland knows that points need to come quickly if Ilkeston want to avoid getting stuck in the bottom four for too long.

He said: “It’s all very well having the games in hand but if you’re not taking points from them then the advantage will disappear very quickly.

“We’ve now got three games coming up against Corby, Barwell and Skelmersdale - all of them not too far from us in the standings and all matches we really need to pick up points from.”

Holland acknowledged he was starting to sound like a stuck record in emphasising his desire for a goalscorer to be added to the squad following Tuesday’s 1-0 loss at Rushall.

The Robins have scored just four times in their seven league games and the need for goals to make a difference to games is becoming more evident as time passes.

Holland said: “We’re often losing games by the odd goal which shows what a difference an extra few goals could make to us.

“It’s nothing against the lads we already have here, but I need more options to pair two up front when needed and that will see us pose far more of a threat.

“We’re working hard to remedy it but goalscorers are a valuable commodity and it isn’t easy just to bring one in.”

Saturday’s FA Cup win earned Stourbridge a trip to Nantwich Town in the fourth qualifying round, despite the Robins taking an early lead through Rory Coleman.

Holland said: “It’s obviously frustrating as we wanted to go as far as we could in the FA Cup both for the club and for the fans.

“The circumstances are tough too because having seen the video the ref has clearly made a mistake for the penalty that won them the game.

“Even so, we still need to be a lot more clinical in the final third and convert more of the chances we’re creating.

“We need to man up at times and realise that we can’t keep coming in and saying how unlucky we are. At half-time I said to the players that to be a successful team you have to overcome setbacks better and in the end we didn’t have enough today.”

Holland confirmed he’s keen to secure striker Malachi Lavelle-Moore on a more permanent deal after his debut in Saturday’s game.

The former Notts County, Torquay and Macclesfield man played for 65 minutes but struggled as a lone striker, doing most of his work in wide areas as a replacement for the injured Anthony Dwyer.

Holland said: “As I’ve said, I’m still looking for more firepower but Malachi was with us at the start of pre-season before a family bereavement set him back a bit, and hopefully he’ll give us another option.”