EXPECT Guiseley’s players to not just be channelling their own personal hurt at Macclesfield Town tomorrow afternoon.
After a punchy winter sequence where graft, dedication and effort served the Lions well in equal measure, an aberration arrived at National League North outfit Nuneaton in an embarrassing FA Trophy exit last Saturday, with Adam Lockwood’s men having been licking their wounds ever since.
It has felt like a particularly long week for Guiseley following a bleak 6-1 hammering in the heart of the country, with the visitors put to the sword by rampant forward Jordan Nicholson, who helped himself to five goals.
Boss Lockwood was in no mood to dress up proceedings afterwards following an ‘unacceptable’ showing by his side, who veered off script after getting plenty right in recent months.
Lockwood issued an apology to supporters on behalf of the dressing room and is conscious that it is not just him and his players and staff who have been hurting too – with some redemption sought in the National League at Moss Rose tomorrow.
Lockwood, hoping that some in-house answers have been found to enable things to be put right at the first available juncture tomorrow, said: “I think as individuals, me and Dave (Penney) and everybody included within the club, when you have results like that, it’s tough.
“When we have positive results, it is for everyone connected with the club who should take credit for it.
“On days like Saturday, everyone should feel the pain.
“If people don’t feel the pain and aren’t pulling in the right direction, they are blaming other people and the blame game goes on and you are in trouble.
“Everyone takes the plaudits and we have got to take some criticism as individuals and that’s everybody connected to the club as well.
“You win as a team and lose as one and that’s how you have got to do it.
“It is a bit of a corny saying, but that is how it has to be and if people don’t learn from it, then we don’t have much chance, to be honest.
“I learned a lot of things, which will hopefully stand me, the squad and club in good stead because we can address things we have seen and are not happy about. It has answered some questions.
“We have to deal with it in a way we see is right.”
Matters were compounded on Saturday with defender Ashley Palmer, in impressive recent form, suffering a nasty-looking injury which saw him stretchered off and taken to hospital and he is set for a spell on the sidelines.
Lockwood added: “Ash has been great for us.
“He came out of the side and was then back in and has been outstanding.
“I feel sorry for him as a player. But these things happen. First and foremost, I hope we get him right.”
Harrogate Town travel to FC United of Manchester in National League North tomorrow minus their first-choice strike pairing.
JP Pittman and Simon Ainge were both sent off in last weekend’s 1-0 home win over Bradford Park Avenue and now face a spell on the sidelines through suspension.
As a result, boss Simon Weaver is left with a selection headache, but says that it is up to him to “find a solution.”
“It’s immensely frustrating,” he said.
“JP is our top-scorer and Aingey has netted five goals in his last two games. We’ve made a really positive start to the calendar year and just started to build some momentum, and then we suffer another setback.
“What makes it worse is that Aingey’s two bookings were undeserved, but now he’s banned for two matches.
“We’ve got options in the forward positions, it’s just a case of working out who we think will fit into the system the best.”
Elsewhere in National North, eighth-placed FC Halifax Town host fifth-placed Salford City and third-from-bottom Bradford Park Avenue entertain Boston United.
In the Evo-Stik League Premier Division, Frickley Athletic are back in action with a home clash against Sutton Coldfield Town who are just three points behind them.
In the First Division North, Ossett Town will be looking to get back on track following their last-minute defeat to Colne when they travel to Goole AFC.
Sixth-placed Farsley Celtic could make a significant move up the league if they can gain all three points at Colne tomorrow, while ninth-placed Brighouse Town will look to put last week’s late heartbreak against Burscough behind them when they host Scarborough Athletic.
Elsewhere, Tadcaster Albion play at Glossop North End and fourth-from-bottom Ossett Albion entertain Mossley.
THE big game in the Premier Division sees Paul Marshall’s second-placed Pickering Town host fourth-placed Thackley.
Town are currently only one point clear of tomorrow’s oppponents but have two games in hand on them.
Fresh from their 4-2 midweek victory over Albion Sports, third-placed Bridlington Town face a trip to next-to-bottom Retford United.
Seventh-placed Liversedge host eight-placed Staveley Miners Welfare while 10th-placed Hemsworth Miners Welfare face a trip to Maltby Main, who they lost 4-2 against just three days ago.
Garforth Town, who were 3-0 victors themselves over Hemsworth last weekend, travel to Clipstone tomorrow while Harrogate Railway Athletic host Armthorpe Welfare.
Division One leaders AFC Emley will be looking to start off on another winning run when they host third-placed Grimsby Borough.
Emley suffered only their fifth defeat of the season at Teversal last time out but are still five points clear of second-placed Penistone Church, who host Teversal.
Fourth-placed Pontefract Collieries travel to mid-table Eccleshill United while eighth-placed Knaresborough Town play at Shirebrook Town.
There’s a Yorkshire derby at ninth-placed Selby Town as Yorkshire Amateur are the visitors and 11th-placed Glasshoughton Welfare entertain Campion.