Guiseley won’t be taking it easy against derby rivals

Mark Bower
Mark Bower
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THE VANARAMA NORTH table may point to a home win for Guiseley tonight, but Mark Bower is not fooled.

Bower’s promotion-chasing side face derby opponents in struggling Bradford Park Avenue in a rearranged game at Nethermoor with both sides requiring points for different reasons.

Fifth-placed Guiseley – 2-0 victors over Boston United on Saturday – are seeking to put on pressure on the top four, but must again do without the injured duo of former Leeds United defender Ben Parker and ex-Norwich player Oli Johnson.

Despite their absences, the Lions still start as strong favourites tonight, but Bower is wary and is also mindful of his side’s recent inconsistency in terms of results.

On the clash with Avenue, who possess a familiar face to Bower in the shape of his ex-Bradford City team-mate Simon Ainge, the Lions chief said: “Park Avenue have taken four points from their last two league games and have beaten Barrow this season too.

“We certainly won’t be taking it lightly. It’s a local derby match as well which raises the stakes a little bit as well and both teams are desperate for the points.

“We know a fair bit about them and I know Simon Ainge, having played with him at Guiseley and knowing him from Bradford City as well. He’s gone in there as a big signing for them and seems to have started very well by all reports too.

“We certainly know his strengths and it won’t be easy against them and should be a tight game, but if we are at our best, we have got to be confident we can get a result.”

Commenting on his side’s recent form, Bower added: “We had a good result against Fylde and then had a disappointment against Hednesford after that and if we want to achieve what we want, we need to put a string of wins together rather than be inconsistent.

“That has probably been the biggest disappointment of the season really. We haven’t had that big consistent run like on a couple of occasions last season.

“But we have had some difficult recent fixtures and every game we have played over the past few weeks has been against teams up there challenging, so it’s been difficult.

“We would have liked a few more points, but we are where we are and have a good chance to make a move if we follow up Saturday against Park Avenue.”

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