Longton’s Mikey Allen says Scunthorpe clash is crucial

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Longton Rugby Club blindside flanker Mikey Allen has stressed the importance of this weekend’s match against Scunthorpe.

The team haven’t won since 13 January and are looking to end their three-match winless streak at home on Saturday.

“It’s massive for us really,” he told StaffsLive. “It’s one of our games in hand because it got cancelled just before Christmas.

“Given where we are in the table, we’re seven points off safety at the moment, so we really do need to win our games in hand.

“Defensively we’ve got to be solid because last weekend against top of the league, Birmingham and Solihull, we were very good defensively. We were unlucky to lose.

“Our gameplan will be to keep it tight, win our own ball at set-pieces and do the basics well. If we do that, we won’t be too far off.”

The squad is looking in good shape ahead of the encounter.

“Our fly-half is still out through suspension but our main centre is back so hopefully he will start on the weekend.

That will be a big boost for us all. Apart from that, I think the squad is at pretty good strength.”

Longton have three home games on the spin coming up and Allen believes their home form will be key to climbing up the table.

“Realistically we need three wins from our three upcoming home games, if not three home bonus point wins.

“We need between 12 and 15 points, especially the one against Bourneville who are only just above us in the table.

“The Newport game is massive as well – they beat us earlier in the season so we owe them one.”

Allen also touched on the mood in the camp being positive despite some of the unfavourable results that the team has had.

“The atmosphere has actually been quite good. Training has been brilliant – all the lads were there on Thursday in good spirits and doing the basics well.

“The dynamic of the club has actually really improved over the last few months even though results haven’t necessarily gone our way. This could work in our favour come the end of the season.”

Longton play Scunthorpe at Trentham Fields on Saturday. Kick off is 2.15pm.

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