Kidsgrove Athletic take on Leek Town this weekend, and manager Ryan Austin believes the local derby will be a ‘tough, competitive’ test for his side.
The Grove welcome their rivals to the Novus Stadium on Saturday, and Austin expects both sides to bounce back from their last league games, in which both sides had disappointing results.
Leek Town found themselves 3-0 up at the 80th minute in their last match against Alvechurch, yet conceded three in the closing 10 minutes, only coming out with a draw. Due to this, Austin is expecting a positive response from his opponents.
“I think it’s going to be a tough, competitive game – like you say, it’s a local derby. I’m expecting a reaction from their result the other night, I was at the game and, to be fair, they were very good, but obviously they’ll be disappointed,” he said.
“On the flip side of that, I expect us to be at it as well. It’s a local rivalry and a lot of our players have played for Leek Town and a lot of their players have played for us – obviously we’ll be at it from the start.”
Kidsgrove currently find themselves ten places below Leek Town in the league table, yet Austin has called on his players to be confident of getting a result going into the game.
“I think we have to be confident, but we’ll treat Leek with respect. They’re higher than us in the league for a reason – we’re not daft enough to think they’re going to come here and roll over,” he added.
“They’ll be conscious of the fact that we’ve beaten them twice [in the last two meetings], we need to take positives from that and hopefully come out with another positive result.
“We treat any game as professionally as we can. We’ll be prepared this week as we know who we’re playing and we’re prepared for them, but I wouldn’t say we’ve prepared any differently.”
This weekend’s clash kicks off at 3pm on Saturday.