Howell doesn’t blame the referee for Redditch postponment

City boss felt referee’s decision was fair

ST ALBANS City boss David Howell says he had no complaints with referee Thomas Harty’s decision to call off last Saturday’s game at Redditch United.

Howell and his players had made the trip to the Midlands after consulting the home club earlier in the day but arrived at the ground to find an area of the pitch in the shade of the main stand that was still frozen solid. Referee Harty called a 1.45pm pitch inspection and ruled that the pitch was unfit for play, a decision Howell felt the home side weren’t too disappointed with.

“Like I said to the players afterwards, I will look to take the positives from the afternoon which were; they were more than happy to see it called off,” Howell told the Herts Advertiser.

“Alongside Cambridge we are the form side and they (Redditch) are not on a great run so they were happy for it to be called off and I see that as a compliment.

“Other sides see us as a form side and we are not flying under the radar. We need to make sure we deliver what the other teams are expecting from us.

“The second reason is that sometimes the pitch can be a leveller. I would hate to see a player slip over on the pitch and be out for three or four weeks so I couldn’t blame the referee. Ninety percent of the pitch was fine it was just that 20x20 piece that was deemed unplayable.”

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Struggling Swindon Supermarine are the visitors to Clarence Park this Saturday with City looking to avenge a 2-1 defeat earlier in the season and bidding to keep their good run of form in tact.

“It is a chance for us to show others how far we have come,” explained Howell.

“As I said to someone else about our run in it is not the opposition I fear it is ourselves. We’ve got to keep going and not get complacent.”

The City boss also revealed that long-term absentees James Bent and Brian Haule could both leave the club on loan in a bid to get some game time. The forwards have both been blighted by injury this term but featured in the Reserves’ 1-0 win over Tokyngton Manor last weekend.

“James Bent and Brian Haule both had a run out for the reserves at the weekend to get some more game time,” revealed Howell.

“There are a few teams – Aylesbury and Northwood – who are interested in taking Brian for a month and I might contemplate doing the same with Benty.”