Captain Leepaul Scroggins has urged South Shields to “get back in the driving seat” this weekend as they prepare themselves for a tough double-header.
The Mariners were left frustrated on Tuesday as Alnwick Town twice came from behind to snatch a 2-2 draw, ending Shields’ four-match winning run.
Although this weekend’s two games are going to be very difficult, they give us the chance to get back in the driving seatLeepaul Scroggins
Tomorrow, they will host Ryhope CW at Mariners Park, while they make the short trip to Hebburn Town on Monday.
The second-placed Mariners will be coming up against two of the sides who are expected to challenge them for promotion this season in Northern League Division Two, and for Scroggins, who is set to make his 150th appearance for the club tomorrow, the fixtures provide Shields with a great opportunity.
He said: “Tuesday was a frustrating night for us, and we didn’t play particularly well.
“We seem to be getting punished for all of our mistakes, and we need to cut them out, because they’re costing us points.
“We’ve got to look at the positives, though, and although this weekend’s two games are going to be very difficult, they give us a chance to get back in the driving seat.
“There’s no better game to have than Ryhope, as they are also seen as major contenders for the league.
“We need the three points, but we know Ryhope will be up for it, especially after beating Team Northumbria on Tuesday.”
First-team coach David Hall, meanwhile, feels Shields will have to “roll their sleeves up” more in the weeks and months ahead.
He said: “It will be an important weekend, particularly the Hebburn game, with it being a local derby.
“Both of the teams will be up for it, as will all of the teams we play against this season.
“You saw by Alnwick’s celebrations when they got the second goal how much it meant to them to get a draw against us.
“People see us as a bit of a scalp this year, and on matchdays, we’re going to have to be up for it. We’ll have to be as strong as them, show as much desire as them and want it as much as they do, because we have the quality to get us through.
“We’re going to have to roll our sleeves up every now and again.”
Tomorrow’s game, which is being sponsored by Ashley Timber, will kick-off at 3pm at Mariners Park, and the club is urging fans to stay behind after the game to take advantage of a free barbeque, and a Happy Hour in the downstairs bar.
The Mariners will be without the injured David Foley for the fixture.