Goater: No new faces expected

editorial image

Shaun Goater says he doesn’t expect to bring in any new faces at Ilkeston FC ahead of Thursday’s non-league transfer deadline.

The Robins boss has made attempts to bring in some loan signings to bolster his squad, but the lack of availability of his desired players means he will instead continue with his current squad.

And whilst relegation seems the most likely scenario even if Ilkeston were to bring in new players, Goater remains keen to finish the season as strongly as possible.

He said: “I’ve made a lot of enquiries but the kinds of players we want are already out on loan or not being released by their clubs.

“So we’ll go with what we have, which is a talented bunch of players that just need to keep learning as a group and reflecting on every game.

“We have to get the team spirit right and fight on. It’s important we finish the season in good spirits, irrespective of whether we go down or not, as creating a positive vibe ahead of the summer is really important.”

Monday night saw Ilkeston beaten 3-1 at promotion-chasing Stourbridge despite leading until the 75th minute.

And Goater felt disappointed at the way his side collapsed.

He said: “We’d worked so well for 65-70 minutes but once they got level they rallied and finished the game off.

“We need to look at how we managed the game whilst ahead and even when it was 1-1, and why we couldn’t see it out better. Young players have to learn from these experiences as not seeing games out well enough is symptomatic of having such a young team.

“We can take heart from some good periods of play against two of the top sides over the last week but still need to do much more.”

Ilkeston now prepare to host fellow strugglers Frickley Athletic on Saturday, before travelling for the rearranged game at Hednesford next Tuesday night.

Goater feels Saturday’s game falls firmly into the ‘six-pointer’ category, even with Ilkeston so far adrift of safety.

He said: “Every game is crucial and you never know what a win could do.

“It will be a different kind of game to those we faced this week with Frickley fighting for their lives too, but it’s one we have to win.

“We don’t want to end the season with too many ‘what ifs’, so even if we go down we need to win as many games as we can so we can say we did all we could.

“That starts this weekend against a team who are also desperate for points.”

Goater added that as of Tuesday night he had heard no more about whether a rumoured takeover of the club was imminent, saying: “Players and fans keep asking me and although I’m not sure what’s happening, it would be good to have it sorted out soon one way or another.”