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St Albans City boss James Gray says his side need to be more consistent and is hoping to bring in two 'new faces'
St Albans City joint manager James Gray admits his side are struggling for consistency but hopes to put that right by bringing “a couple of new faces” to the club this week.
The Saints have taken 13 points from their first nine matches and sit 11th in the early Calor League Premier Division.
Gray’s men suffered a disappointing 2-1 defeat to Stourbridge on Saturday and defensive mistakes proved costly.
The visitors went ahead in the 19th minute as an error from Lee Chappell saw Ben Billingham break into the box and fire past Paul Bastock.
A moment of madness from the Saints goalkeeper then saw a second-half penalty awarded to Stourbridge.
Bastock collected a cross under pressure from Will Richards but inexplicably kicked out at the striker.
Sean Geddes drove the resulting spot-kick into the middle of the net for his seventh goal of the season.
The Saints did pull a goal back as a deflected strike from John Frendo found the net but it was too little, too late.
“We are just lacking a little but we are trying to put that right,” Gray said. “I don’t want to say too much on that but we may have a couple of new faces in the side by the weekend.
“Four of our defeats have come against sides which are in the top five or six. So that shows we are lacking something against the top sides in the table.
“Hopefully we can change and I have seen enough from us this season to indicate that we can challenge.
“What we need to do is to find the consistency in our performances. We are excellent in certain games but then don’t play well in the next two.
“So we are just working to get everyone performing at the same level in matches. Players are at this level because they are missing something. “But it is my job to get the best out of the players and we have shown that we are a good side.”
The Saints announced on Sunday that Layne Eadie, Aston Goss and Ayran Tajbakhsh have all been released but Leyton Orient’s Harrison Georgiou has joined on an initial three-month loan deal.
Gray said the 18-year-old impressed in a pre-season friendly between the two sides and hopes the youngster can add a goal threat from midfield that has been missing so far this season.
He added: “We will have to use him (Georgiou) in the right games because there is no point sticking him up against two centre midfielders who are 15 stone.
“But he undoubtedly has talent and will cause teams in the division problems. What we need is more goals from midfield as well because we can’t always rely on the strikers to get the goals for us. They have to come from across the team.”
St Albans are in FA Cup action on Saturday and welcome Billericay Town to Clarence Park in the second qualifying round.
The Saints produced their best performance of the season in the last round, beating Enfield Town 6-1.
Gray is hoping for a repeat display and believes a win will help the side build momentum in the league.
He said: “We are at home and hopefully we can make it into the next round of the competition. I will be going to watch them tonight (Monday) but the pressure of the league will be off us so hopefully we can go out and produce a good performance.
“A cup run can be very good for you and hopefully we get a win and can then take that on to our next three league matches because I think we can get nine points from those.”