St Albans City boss sets play-off points target

St Albans & Harpenden Review: Warren Whitely will offer the Saints an attacking threat during the run-in: David Tavener Warren Whitely will offer the Saints an attacking threat during the run-in: David Tavener

Joint manager James Gray believes ten points from their last six games should be enough for St Albans City to seal a play-off spot.

The Saints are third in the Southern Premier Division after their 2-1 win at Bashley on Saturday and are well on course to extend their season.

Gray said: “We are sitting nicely in the table but we won’t take anything for granted. We looked at the table on Monday and I think that ten to 12 points should definitely get us into the play-offs.

“We’ve set the lads a challenge and if we can win all of our remaining games then we could end up in second place which would give us a good draw in the play-offs.”

The visitors fell behind at Bashley but fought back to win after goals from Kerrea Gilbert and John Frendo.

Gray said: “It was a setback to go behind against the run of play. But we showed a lot of character to fight back in difficult conditions on a bobbly pitch. It was a potential banana skin for us so for us it was all about coming away with a result.”

The Saints handed debuts to midfielder Steve Wales and winger Warren Whitely in the Bashley victory and Gray was impressed with their contribution.

Wales has moved to Clarence Park from promotion rivals Chesham while Whitely was previously at Margate.

Gray said: “Steve is a very experienced player and he has been at a good level. He will offer us forward running and goals.

“I thought he was unlucky not to score for us on Saturday and he will only get better once he gets used to his surroundings.”

Whitely came off the bench in the last 15 minutes and Gray hopes he will provide an attacking threat for the Saints.

Gray said: “Warren is a speedy winger and we feel that we’ve lacked a bit of pace recently. He may well get his first start on Saturday.”

St Albans entertain Burnham this weekend and they will have to manage without the suspended Frendo, James Comley and goalkeeper Paul Bastock.

The manager said: “It is an opportunity for some of the other lads to come in and stake a claim for the shirt.”

Looking ahead to this weekend’s league game, Gray said: “I feel very confident going into Saturday. We’ve had two good training sessions and I’m confident that we will produce a good performance and three points.

“When we played Burnham earlier in the season it was like a rugby pitch and a game of hoofball. We were just pleased to come away with a win there.”

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