When Sheffield FC step out to take on Division One South promotion chasing Stamford at Dronfield tomorrow it will be Club’s sixth game in 15 days.
Yet despite the gruelling schedule Sheffield have remained unbeaten in April - prior to last night’s home Sheffield Senior Cup tie against Staveley - something that has delighted boss Ian Whitehorne.
“I’ve been really pleased with our recent run of form” he said. “Only one defeat in our last 10 games shows we have found the consistency that’s eluded us all season. Even in our last two games, which came on the back of four matches in a eight days, we have managed to come back from two goals down to draw them both.”
Whitehorne believes his team have reaped rewards because of their mental strength and work rate during a fitness-sapping run of matches.
He said; “We were out on our feet in the last game against Northwich but somehow managed to draw. In all honesty we probably didn’t deserve to but we kept going to the end and sometimes if you work hard you get that bit of luck.”
And looking ahead to the visit of fourth-placed Stamford he said: “They are flying at the moment. It will be a very difficult fixture for us. Jack Waddle has returned to Chesterfield after the expiry of his loan period and we have a two or three struggling with knocks so we are really down to the bare bones. But we will patch them up and send them out again.”
Despite their lofty position Stamford arrive having won once in the last six league outings.
Stocksbridge Park Steels boss Darren Schofield says there is still plenty of work to do ahead of the trip to mid-table Ashton United despite seeing his side pull six-points clear of the drop zone.
Steels followed up last weekend’s 4-3 victory over Frickley Athletic with a second home win in three days by beating Stafford Rangers 2-0 on Tuesday. But Schofield warned they still require more points on the board before securing the Premier Division safety. “We won’t be sitting back on our laurels” said the Bracken Moor boss. “We probably need another couple of victories to be sure of staying up so will go to Ashton looking to carry on the good work and hopefully comeback with three points.
“It will not be easy, Ashton are a good side that try and get the ball down and play football but we go there full of confidence. It couldn’t have been a better week for us with two wins. The lads showed character to come from behind against Frickley and we showed how much we really wanted the points.
“Against Stafford we scored early in each half then defended well despite making a number enforced changes due to injury, so to keep a clean sheet as well was pleasing.”
Following three successive scoreless draws Ashton bounced back to winning ways on Wednesday beating Matlock Town 2-0 at home.
Steels’ main concern is to striker Danny South who had to come off against Stafford early on after suffering concussion.
Elsewhere, managerless Worksop Town entertain promotion play-off hopefuls Chorley after parting company with Simon Clark at the beginning of the week.
The Tigers, who are without a win in four, have put U19s manger Andy Lake in charge of first team affairs for the rest of the season.
Matlock Town take on Marine at Causeway Lane where the Gladiators will be looking to complete a league double following a 3-1 victory at the Arriva Stadium in November.