City playing their way back into form

James Comley scored City's third against Frome Town. Picture: Bob Walkley

James Comley scored City's third against Frome Town. Picture: Bob Walkley - Credit: Archant

St Albans City joint manager James Gray believes his side is playing its way back into form after they comfortably beat Frome Town at Clarence Park on Saturday.

John Frendo scores the fourth goal. Picture: Bob Walkley

John Frendo scores the fourth goal. Picture: Bob Walkley - Credit: Archant

Goals from Jamal Lowe, James Comley, David Keenleyside and John Frendo meant City leapt into sixth place in the league, one above Stourbridge who drew with Hitchin Town.

Even more pleasing to the manager was to see his side play with the gusto that inspired promotion talk earlier in the season.

Throughout October and November City were in scintillating form, going on an 11-game unbeaten run and losing just three times in a 22-game stretch. They also broke a club record for the most consecutive away wins with a 4-0 victory over Hertford.

While the Saints have still been picking up points, they were not at their best during the tail-end of 2013, something Gray eluded to following the defeat at Hungerford Town.

After the loss on December 28, he said: “I felt today was a combination of the last four games. I’ve seen a bit of complacency and tried to eradicate it but we were nowhere near what we needed to be.”

After the turn of the New Year, City seem to have rekindled their form and Gray hopes it is the start of another good run.

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“We asked the lads for a reaction [after the Hungerford loss] and we got a good one,” he said.

“We played good football at times and towards the end I thought we were in cruise control. We played well but we never hit top gear in the first half. After the break we applied ourselves, moved the ball well, got hold of the midfield and scored some good goals.

“I feel we are getting back to a bit of form; it wasn’t just pretty in middle, we were getting shots on goal as well. We’re finding our form again and the players are playing their way back [to form].

He added: “I’m pleased with three points and the clean sheet. Almost every time we’ve had a defeat we’ve come back; that’s the sign of a good side.

“Teams are always going to get beaten at this level – Hemel have got some tough games coming up – so we need to do what we can to close the gap.

“It’s a pleasing Saturday but we can’t get carried away. We need to focus on getting into the play-off places, that’s our main objective, before we try to chase down the league leaders.”