National League: Guiseley can rise to challenge, says Mark Bower

Guiseley manager Mark Bower. Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe.
Guiseley manager Mark Bower. Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe.
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Guiseley manager Mark Bower views Grimsby as the best team in the National League, but he expects his players to compete when they face the third-placed side.

The Lions fell to a disheartening 3-0 loss against Gateshead on Monday, with Bower making it clear that the second-half display was unacceptable.

It may have been Christmas, but the manager was unhappy that his side “gift-wrapped” the three points for the Tynesiders.

However, he expects his team to learn lessons from that defeat and follow up good recent first-half displays with a complete performance.

Bower said: “It’s a big challenge for our players and one I’m sure they can rise to.

“We have good experience in the dressing room, plenty of players who have played at Grimsby in the past, but they are a very good side.

“They are on a terrific run in the league at the minute, they’ve had some really good results and they have players in form.

“They are also able to pick from the same group of players week-in, week-out.

“I think, from what I’ve seen this season, that they are the best team in the league. I can see them proving that between now and May.

“We have to go there and compete as we did in the first half of two tough trips, Aldershot and Gateshead, and try and carry that through the 90 minutes.”

Reflecting on recent issues, Bower believes a lack of goal-threat and creativity has been an issue in recent weeks.

Halifax Town will be hoping to follow up their exceptional festive form against Lincoln City today, a team they beat 2-0 as recently as Boxing Day.

National League North side Harrogate Town will attempt to climb back into the play-off places when they host Stockport County.