Draw pleases boss
STEVE Castle declared himself proud of his players after they held high-flying Dover Athletic to a 1-1 draw on Saturday. The game at Dover s Crabble home was just one of three games in the league to go ahead after the hosts had hired pitch covers to prote
STEVE Castle declared himself proud of his players after they held high-flying Dover Athletic to a 1-1 draw on Saturday.
The game at Dover's Crabble home was just one of three games in the league to go ahead after the hosts had hired pitch covers to protect the pitch and the Saints had battled their way through the gridlocked traffic that was blocking the motorways in Kent.
The draw lifts the Saints up to 11th spot in the Blue Square South table and Castle paid tribute to the performance of his players.
"All season we've been limited in our choice of players but Saturday we were even more so," the City boss told the Herts Advertiser.
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"The lads did me proud and each and every one of them put in terrific performance. We've taken a chance with Angus (McLachlan) and he certainly didn't let himself down, and Adam Everitt, the lad's got a hernia and yet you wouldn't know it."
Jonathan O'Donnell notched City's goal with a free kick that went straight in but the hosts equalised almost instantly.
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"We've tried to get JJ (O'Donnell) to whip the ball in and see what happens," said Castle.
"It's that in-swinging delivery with lots of bodies in there and to be honest it was a complete replica of their goal. If it's a good ball, which both of them were, then it's undefendable and there's no blame from me on my lads."
The Saints had bolstered their attacking options ahead of the Dover game with the signing of Australian midfielder Angus McLachlan.
McLachlan joins the Saints having previously played for Cheshunt and Cambridge City and made his debut at Crabble on Saturday.
"Angus has been playing his football at Cambridge City and Cheshunt but Cambridge was really a little bit too far for him," revealed Castle.
"We'd been trying to get him a reserve game but that hasn't come to fruition," revealed the Saints chief.
"We had a practice game and as a fellow midfielder I could see there was a lot of enthusiasm and hard work there and I took a calculated gamble.
"We spoke to a couple of lads up at Cambridge and they backed that up. He showed during the game that he's worth another chance."
The Saints' Herts Senior Cup tie with Royston on Monday night was called off due to the weather so their next game is Boxing Day's trip to Maidenhead United.
The Magpies, who also provide the Saints' opposition on New Year's Day, have had a mixed season and are currently in 15th spot and Castle says it's vital City get the upper hand in both games.
"It's a weird, weird league this season. They're on a comparable budget to ourselves and although they've lost a good proportion of players over the summer they're still pulling out decent results.
"It's vital we get the upper hand in the two games we play against them over Christmas and New Year.