Lions aim to end poor run against Athletic

Jake LawlorJake Lawlor
Jake Lawlor
GIVEN their recent propensity for headline statistics, it should come as no surprise that Guiseley are chasing another tomorrow afternoon.

Fresh from claiming a National League ‘first’ in winning three successive games for the first time at this level following their victory over Aldershot last time out at Nethermoor, the Lions are chasing another feather in their cap against visiting Dover this weekend.

Victory would see 16th-placed Guiseley equal last season’s points tally of 49 with six games of the campaign still to go – which would represent a considerable feat, given their desperate plight in the autumn.

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But, typically, grounded manager Adam Lockwood is remaining steadfastly ‘on message.’

It is a wise policy, with Guiseley’s tough run of fixtures continuing at home to sixth-placed Dover, smarting from their last away trip, which saw them humbled 5-0 at Boreham Wood.

But if Guiseley continue to adapt as well as they have done in their recent fine run, which has seen them lose just once in their past nine matches and just once in their last 13 in the league at Nethermoor, then the chances of the Lions matching last season’s points haul in double-quick time are healthy.

On the mission for Guiseley, who also face a stiff ask in their next home game against another promotion aspirant in Forest Green Rovers on April 8, Lockwood said: “Every game in this league is tough.

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“It might sound a bit boring and I bang on, but if you are not right and don’t prepare right and do the right things, then you don’t get anything out of games at this level.

“To be fair, that is at most levels and if we continue to concentrate on who what we want to do and where we want to be, hopefully we will keep picking points up.”

Guiseley’s ‘horses for courses’ pragmatic approach to games regarding who they line up against have served them noticeably well in recent times, with the tactical flexibility of Lockwood’s troops being markedly impressive.

That professionalism was manifested in midweek in a 1-1 draw at form side Gateshead and while Lockwood was pleased with developments in the round in the north-east, he was slightly disappointed not to celebrating three points after Heed cancelled out Jake Lawlor’s first-half opener. It clearly is a measure of how far Guiseley – who have a 10-point buffer above fourth-from-bottom York City – have come.

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But equally, Lockwood knows that adaptability must continue, with tomorrow’s assignment with Dover, who they have never beaten in five previous outings, likely to further test their application and mindset.

He said: “I can pick my team and talk about how we want to go about each game and approach each game differently.

“I think if you look at the last 10 games and all the different challenges we have had, we have come up against some very good sides with different types of threats with the way they play football and for me, my group of players have acquitted themselves excellently.”