Tadcaster Albion pile pressure on rivals

Josh Barrett

Josh Barrett

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Paul Marshall feels his side’s impeccable run has piled the pressure on their Northern Counties East League Premier rivals.

An eighth-minute own goal was enough to bolster Albion’s unbeaten league run to 22 matches as Marshall’s youngsters saw off struggling Armthorpe Welfare 1-0 on Saturday.

The victory pulled Albion eight points clear at the top of the table, as their chasers Thackley lost on Wednesday night.

Brighouse’s 2-1 to Barton Old Boys, who leapt into second-place behind Albion, was their third match in succession without victory.

And Marshall suggested playing catch-up to his leaders could have affected the seven-match winning streak they had previously enjoyed.

Marshall said: “Everyone said Brighouse were going to do this and do that.

“But it’s difficult when you are so many points behind however many games you have in hand.

“The pressure is on them to win all their games. Bridlington, Thackley, Albion Sports, they know they have to win every time they play.”

Albion entertain eighth-place Heanor Town at the 2inspire Stadium this Saturday (kick-off 3pm).

Heanor have scored 36 goals on their travels this season, the highest total in the league, and have the league’s top shooter Kieran Debrower upfront.

Debrower has already smashed in 29 goals this season, including five hat-tricks, and his strike-partner Nathan Benger has scored nine in his last seven matches.

And Marshall indicated he would change his side’s shape to cope with Heanor’s free-scoring dangermen.

“There’s no question about it, they score goals. But they do concede a few too,” said Marshall.

“It’ll be a really tough game.

“They beat us 2-0 at our place last year but we beat them 3-1 in a smash and grab win earlier this year.

“They are a very attacking team with a lot of threats. For one guy to score five hat-tricks before Christmas is phenomenal. After last Saturday, we might have to look at how we deal better defensively.”

Defender George Bissett should return despite a hernia niggle but full-back Will Pepper misses the clash.

Jamie Williamson could also make the matchday squad.

Seventeen-year-old left-back Steve Bielby made his debut in Saturday’s victory and earned plaudits from Marshall.

And the gaffer also praised Josh Barrett’s second-half introduction as a key factor to extending their unbeaten streak.

Marshall added: “In the first half we didn’t get to grips with their wingers. They created a few chances and it could have been 3-3 after 30 minute.

“We were never comfortable until Josh came and held the ball up.

“After that, we saw the win out well.”