Higley hopes for end to injury jinx

LONDON APSA boss John Higley is confident he can turn around their poor run.

The Newham-based side have won one out of their last 12 games, but he is hoping once he can get his injury-plagued squad back on the pitch, results will start to improve.

“We have had a torrid time of late with the squad down to its bare bones,” he said.

“At this level you rarely have a big enough squad and with several key players missing we have lacked the quality in all areas.

“The lads that have played, apart from in the Witham Town game, haven’t really been thrashed and in a couple of games should have picked up points or wins, but individual errors have cost us.

“We just need that little bit of luck to turn our season around and I am confident we can.”

“If you look at the results, we have played the top teams and lost, but against the lower sides we have picked up points.”

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Higley’s side lost 2-0 on Saturday, conceding two goals in the final 20 minutes to end their chances at Southchurch Park against Southend Manor.

The team were knocked out at the quarter-final stage of the Gordon Brasted Trophy on Monday night with a 2-1 defeat at Eton Manor, despite leading until the hour mark, though the APSA boss can take positives from the two defeats.

“When you are missing key players it is always difficult, and although we lack that bit of quality up front we have been reasonably solid,” said Higley

“We have held teams for the majority of the match which is a good sign and if we can just get some of the players back I am sure things will start to improve.”

He will hope for better luck when they take on Barkingside at the weekend, and Higley maintains that APSA can still finish in the top 10 of the Essex Senior League.

“We stand a chance if we can build on our solid start to matches,” he said.

“Barkingside will be a tough game, but we will get there soon enough.”

Side have made a solid start to their season, and although they find themselves in 11th spot, Tony Fenn’s team have only played once at their Oakside home all season.

But APSA will be hoping to take advantage of their counterparts’ inactivity after their last two games have been postponed, with their most recent result a 2-1 loss at Southend Manor back on November 6.

n MEANWHILE, London APSA bowed out at the semi-final stage of the Al Badia Vets tournament, which they hosted at Wadham Lodge at the weekend.

They were beaten 2-0 in a closely-fought game against Red Star, who went on to win the tournament, with Tahir Ahmed picking up the ‘Player of the Tournament’ award.

Goals from Aslam Alvi and Shabber Khan were enough for Red Star to win the final, also 2-0, over Inter Asia.