Castle targeting Darts for three points

PUBLISHED: 14:22 22 March 2011 | UPDATED: 15:55 22 March 2011

Dom Petrucci scores. Photo: Bob Walkley

Dom Petrucci scores. Photo: Bob Walkley

ROB WALKLEY

Plus details of tonight’s CITYLIVE coverage

ST ALBANS City boss Steve Castle says tonight’s (Tuesday) game at Dartford is a game the relegation-threatened club must be targeting for three points.

The Saints are currently on a three game unbeaten run after back-to-back wins over Staines and Dorchester were followed by a hard fought point at league leaders Braintree Town on Saturday. Those results have put the Saints within nine points of safety and Castle says the squad must target games with clubs in lower mid-table, like Dartford, for vital victories.

“If we can get the odd draw against the top teams like Ebbsfleet and Welling [that would help] but we’ve got to beat people like Dartford and Thurrock,” said Castle after Saturday’s draw.

“We’re trying to take as much confidence from these results as possible and hopefully that is going to be a massive morale boost for us.”

Dartford assembled a vastly experienced squad during the summer following their promotion from the Ryman Premier Division but have struggled so far this term only recently dragging themselves away from the bottom three.

The Kent side boast an impressive squad and while Castle admits he can’t call on the same quality the City boss believes the Darts will be hard pushed to beat his side for desire.

“They’ve got an unbelievable squad and fanbase,” he said.

“When you’ve got (Charlie) Sheringham and Jon Main that’s one hell of a strike partnership and we’ve got to keep them quiet. They have got a strong squad and we haven’t but what we have is some real desire to give it a go.”

Paul Bastock returns to Princes Park, scene of one of his greatest displays in a City shirt where he single headedly thwarted Dartford in an FA Trophy tie in 2009. The veteran ‘keeper heads into tonight’s game in equally impressive form after another Man of the Match performance at Braintree and Castle admits the ‘keeper sometimes doesn’t get the praise he deserves because people have come to expect it from the 40-year-old.

“I don’t want to be too blasé about him,” explained Castle.

“I still think if he’s not the best goalkeeper at this level he’s one of the best so it is about time the old boy gets some plaudits.”

Dom Petrucci’s wait for his first goal for the first team came to an end at Braintree ending a barren spell in front of goal that had reached the 700-minute mark.

“I’m really pleased with Dom,” explained Castle.

“It’s been frustrating for him but I personally think after his last couple of performances it’s been coming. His hold up play and his desire to win a game of football is second to none.

“With Tony Battersby being 36 and us not being sure how many games we’re going to get out of him in the next two weeks, it’s imperative that one: Dom scores and two: that he performs how he has been doing.”

CITYLIVE coverage will begin at 7.30pm, just click on the link in the top right hand corner.


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