THE FESTIVE month of December is a special time for many and Guiseley are seeking their own presents in a potentially key month in their National League North season.
After a flying start to the campaign, the Lions’ momentum has dipped a little since and they head into tomorrow’s home game with fifth-placed Brackley Town – four spots above them in the table – on a run of just two victories in their last nine league outings.
Thankfully, the Nethermoor outfit still have credit in the bank from early season, but joint-boss Marcus Bignot is under no illusions that Guiseley must up it once again to harden their play-off drive.
More especially on home soil where Guiseley have not won in the league since September.
A perfect chance arrives to rectify that in the shape of a forthcoming double-header – following tomorrow’s visit of Brackley, managerless Kidderminster Harriers head to West Yorkshire on Tuesday.
After hosting Kidderminster, Guiseley travel to Hereford FC on December 21 ahead of their Boxing Day derby with visiting Farsley Celtic before heading to York City for another all-White Rose affair two days later.
Bignot, whose side drew 2-2 at Leamington last time out, said: “We will look at this block of games and after them; if we can be in and around it through the end of Christmas and into the new year, there will be a sense of optimism and dreaming and encouraging.
“But we are around it at the moment and it’d be nice to get through December around it.
“It is an opportunity for us. We have two home games against very good opponents. It is two home games we are going to look forward to and that are very challenging.
“It was important that we did not lose on Saturday against Leamington. It stopped a run of defeats. It gives us a basis to work from. It injects a bit of confidence in the group.”
Brackley, who sauntered to a 6-0 victory at Blyth Spartans last weekend and who drew 1-1 with Farsley in midweek, will certainly provide a stiff test of the Lions’ credentials.
Bignot added: “It is good for us to find our way in terms of how we play and our principles.
“What a good game to gauge ourselves, against a team around the play-offs. Brackley are a benchmark. It’s important for us to get a home win.”
Sitting one place and three points above Guiseley in eighth spot – albeit having played two games more – Farsley had plenty to look forward to in the run-in to the end of the calendar year as they seek to round off a memorable 2019.
Tomorrow, Adam Lakeland’s side face AFC Telford, who lie just below mid-table and despite the Celts being without a win in six in the league, Lakeland’s glass is half-full.
He said: “In the main, I stand by that are our only really disappointing performance in the last six weeks was at Blyth.
“While we have not really been getting the results (lately), I cannot really ask much more of the players. As long as they keep giving their all, we will turn the corner.”
On Telford, he added: “They have probably struggled for consistency as they’ve had some really good results and then ones which you look at and think: ‘I did not see that coming.’.
“But they have got some good players and are another big club. When you go to a big club such as them, they are the favourites.
“But I always have confidence that if we can put in the effort levels and be good in both boxes, we can win games.”
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