MacFarland happy to have got points in the bag early

Paul MacFarland is keen to see Eastwood CFC pick up as many points as possible and hope those teams around them falter as they catch up with their fixtures.
Paul MacFarland is keen to see Eastwood CFC pick up as many points as possible and hope those teams around them falter as they catch up with their fixtures.

Manager Paul MacFarland believes having so far played several more matches than anyone else might work in Eastwood Community FC’s favour as the Central Midlands League South season progesses.

‘Wood are third in the league and three points behind leaders Belper United, but all of the teams around them in the table have played between four and seven games fewer than MacFarland’s men.

And although common sense dictates Eastwood might lose ground when other teams catch up on their fixtures, MacFarland believes it might not be that simple.

He said: “There’s a danger for a lot of clubs that their fixtures might end up being crammed in together come the end of the season and players are going to get tired and pick up injuries, particularly as many play for Sunday teams too.

“So that could impact on their ability to pick up points and it’s a situation that could work in our favour.

“We only have 14 games to go, and although the last batch may all need to be away from home given our 4G pitch is being laid soon, it’s a chance for us to get points in the bag then sit back and see if teams around us can either catch up or pull away.

“Quite a few teams, including ourselves, have applied to go up at the end of the season so it’s well worth getting as many points as we can and seeing where it gets us.”

The pitch at Coronation Park is expected to be dug up at the end of February/early March in order to make way for the new artificial surface, with the hope being that it will be ready for the 2016-17 season.

It is understood Eastwood are aiming to get their remaining home fixtures completed in that time, rather than face having to find alternative grounds to host their games.

Meanwhile, Eastwood romped to a 10-0 success at home to bottom-of-the-table Southwell on Saturday before a 3-3 draw at second-from-bottom Bulwell on Tuesday.

As pleased as MacFarland was with Saturday’s triumph, he was then left frustrated by ‘Wood’s inability to kill Bulwell off three days later.

He said: “Saturday was excellent. Southwell are a young side and got their first win just before Christmas so it wasn’t necessarily an easy game for us, but we got at them early and had scored eight by half-time.

“With us not having had any games over Christmas, nor been able to train, it’s been hard for our lads to keep fit and also avoid the temptations of eating and drinking too much, but they responded well on Saturday.

“Tuesday then had an ‘after the Lord Mayor’s show’ feel about it. I was disappointed because we led three times but conceded quickly on each occasion.

“We had players missing through work commitments, which has been a problem with midweek games all season, nevertheless we really should have won the game and got more valuable points.”

Eastwood host Swanwick Pentrich Road next Wednesday night (13th) before a home game with Blidworth Welfare three days later.