Martin wants Romford to start 2019 with home comforts over Grays
PUBLISHED: 09:00 28 December 2018
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Boro will look to snap an 11-game winless run in the Bostik North on New Year’s Day
Paul Martin is hoping his Romford players can rediscover their early season form at Rookery Hill when Grays Athletic visit on New Year’s Day (Tuesday) in Bostik North.
Boro’s long winless run stretched to 11 league games on Boxing Day when they suffered a 4-1 loss at Tilbury.
It placed them 18th in the table heading into the New Year, but if fellow strugglers Dereham Town and Soham Town Rangers draw with each other on Saturday, Romford will end 2018 at the bottom.
“We are back at home, which is good because we’ve only lost three league games there all season,” Martin said.
“We just need to find a result, but the work ethic is there and it is the final decision and quality in the final third, plus that rub of the green.
“You need the rub of the green sometimes and now we are down the bottom we are not getting it, but hopefully results go our way on the 29th because I don’t want to be bottom come the New Year.”
If Romford do drop to 20th after Saturday’s matches, a draw against eighth-placed Grays would move them back off the basement.
Since September 26, Boro have failed to win in the division and what makes Martin’s task even more difficult is the fact so many players are unavailable ahead of Tuesday’s match.
He added: “A lot of people go away now for Christmas and New Year’s Eve, so we’ll check on the injuries and put out the strongest squad we can.
“We will try to bring in a few new faces for 2019 and make the second half of the season better than the first half.”
Romford ended this year with a frustrating loss at Tilbury in front of a crowd of 201 at Chadfields.
Oliver Spooner put the Dockers ahead after 29 minutes, but Danny Cossington levelled for Boro just three minutes later.
Two first-half goals in quick succession by Lewis Smith and George Sykes gave Tilbury the upper-hand and Smith completed a brace with 16 minutes left.
Boro had their chances, though, and Roddy Lemba saw a penalty saved with the score at 3-1 early in the second half.
Martin added: “We showed a lot more desire than we have done of late just the firepower they have is phenomenal.
“At 3-1 down we won a penalty and could have really got back in the game early in the second half, but we missed it and when they got the fourth that was it.
“We were in the game all the way up until the fourth goal, but unfortunately we don’t have a great record over at Tilbury. We are deadbeat at the minute and struggling to get a squad out due to injuries, but we’ve just got to keep going and keep trying.
“We had plenty of shots and they had plenty and both goalkeepers made saves, so it could have been a 3-3 or 4-4 or even a 7-1 defeat. It was entertaining and end-to-end, but their firepower was the difference.”