Pressure on Saints against Chippenham

ST ALBANS CITY boss David Howell knows the pressure will be on his side to get three points on Saturday as they host Chippenham Town at Clarence Park.

The promotion-targeting Saints have gone three games without a win and disappointingly fell to a 1-0 away defeat at second bottom side Bideford on Saturday.

City defender Danny Gordon’s second half own goal sent St Albans to their sixth Evo-Stik League loss of the campaign.

After that encounter, Howell said: “I have got to get the lads back together during the week.

“We have another tough game on Saturday at Clarence Park when the pressure is going to be on the players to perform and get ourselves back to winning ways.”

Injury has robbed Howell of key players this season.

Top scorer Lewis Toomey and influencial wide man Richard Graham have been missing of late and will be eager to return to action as soon as possible.

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The manager has also been unable to establish a stable back four with various injuries to defenders Curtis Ujah, James Gray and Danny Gordon proving unsettling.

September had seen the Saints win five games on the trot.

However, that run came to an end as they were knocked out of the FA Trophy by Arlesey Town and subsequently exited the FA Cup to Lowestoft and the Red Insure Cup to Hemel Hempstead.

Since that City have struggled to regain the kind of form which saw them enjoy the majority of September.

Howell said: “Our league form has been patchy of late since the cup exits, but there was still some kind of hope that I felt that with one or two players out and coming back, if we can just hang in there and just keep going picking up some points and when they come back in we’ll look to kick on.

“For me I just feel we need to be in and around the top sides come Christmas and the end of the year, look to get everybody back together, change the mentality and make sure that we’re in with a good chance of challenging for this league.”

City are sixth in the league table, one place outside of the play-off places.