Wilson feels the Robins are ‘playing without fear’

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Ilkeston FC stretched their unbeaten run to five matches in all competitions with back-to-back draws, as the games continue to come thick and fast.

Manager Kevin Wilson has been ‘delighted’ with the way his players have gone about their business, earning a 1-1 draw at home to Buxton on Thursday before holding leaders North Ferriby United to a 2-2 draw on Saturday at the New Manor Ground.

He reflected on the matches and said: “We’ve done exceptionally well recently. The last two games in particular, perhaps we were a little disappointed that we didn’t go on to win them both. The application and attitude has been first class.

“Myself and Darren (Caskey), as managers and coaches, can only be delighted with what we are seeing from them in terms of the manner of the performances.

“We let ourselves down a little bit in the first half against Buxton but got back to the style of play we are capable of in the second half. Then we more than matched the leaders on Saturday and I think they might even say we deserved to win because I felt it was a bit of a dubious penalty for their second.

“There were plenty of worse tackles than that in the game and we felt Joe Maguire got the ball, so it was a bit controversial.”

The two games have also featured lively cameo appearances from the bench by Bermuda’s striker Antwan Russell, who scored his first goal for the team on Saturday.

“Antwan came on again, showed a bit more of what he can do but we have to remember it’s very different for him, in terms of the level he’s playing at and the pace of the game. But the goal will do him good and help him as he hopefully improves game by game.

“We have a young squad here, with academy lads coming through.

“That is the whole ethos and philosophy of the club in action right there - and that will never change. But what we lack in experience we more than make up for in attitude and we are playing without fear at the moment.”

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“We will keep pushing hard to see if we can reach the play-offs but, if not, the way they are playing will hopefully benefit us next season.

“We have a cup final at the end of the season and there are positions in that teams up for grabs. Everyone still got something to play for, whether it’s trying to make the play-offs, the cup final, trying to earn a new contract or put themselves in the shop window for a team from a higher division.

“There are a lot of people at this club, both on and off the pitch, working very hard to help the club do as well as it can and, at this stage of the season, that’s very good to see.”