Martin relishing Romford’s meeting with Thurrock

PUBLISHED: 17:00 23 December 2016

Nick Reynolds heads clear for Romford during last season's meeting with landlords Thurrock at Ship Lane (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Nick Reynolds heads clear for Romford during last season's meeting with landlords Thurrock at Ship Lane (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo +44 1376 553468

Boro boss expects tough test at Ship Lane

Romford boss Paul Martin is relishing his side’s meeting with landlords Thurrock in their final Ryman North outing of 2016 on Wednesday.

Boro earned a third successive win in a week at Heybridge on Saturday, thanks to Greg Akpele’s third-minute goal and a Callum Chafer penalty save, and were then able to enjoy an 11-day break over Christmas.

They moved away from the relegation zone as a result of their latest success, but return to action at Ship Lane next week to face a Fleet side on a six-match winning streak in the league and Martin is looking forward to the challenge.

He said: “Thurrock will be a good game, they’re always a good game. It’s a nice flat pitch, both teams will want to win.

“They’re where they are, we’re where we are. If they get the result, they get the result, if we get it, we get it.

“They’ve got a six-game winning streak, so confidence will be high for both teams, but the relationship is good, so we’ll just enjoy the night really.”

Mark Stimson’s Thurrock strengthened their hold on second place in the table with a convincing 4-0 win over VCD Athletic in midweek.

Charlie Stimson took his tally for the season to 12, while Mark Onyemah also reached double figures, and Martin is well aware of the challenge facing his side.

He added: “They’re strong all round. Their goalkeeper is strong, the full-backs, they’re disciplined at the back.

“He’s always an organised manager, an ex-pro, so very organised and very disciplined with his players. They play how he wants them to play.

“They’re sitting second in the league. They had a shaky start and people were a bit wary, but they’ve ridden the storm and they’re sitting in the play-offs now. They’ll be in the play-offs every year and it’s about time they went up again.”

Boro’s win at a foggy Scraley Road came on the back of successes over bottom club Wroxham and VCD Athletic, in which Akpele had also netted.

Chinedu McKenzie tops their charts with 20 goals, while long-serving Nick Reynolds needs one more to surpass Danny Benstock and become the club’s all-time leading scorer since their 1992 reformation.

And although Thurrock will go into next week’s match as favourites, Martin is not too concerned.

He said: “We never mind being the underdogs, I like that.

“We’re always going to be underdogs and I think we were quoted as a pub team against VCD Athletic, but we were 2-0 down and beat them 3-2.

“I’m happy to take whatever, it doesn’t bother me really.”

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