Royston Town boss Steve Castle: We want to progress as much as we can

PUBLISHED: 17:25 31 October 2017 | UPDATED: 17:25 31 October 2017

Tuesday scorer Scott Bridges lines up a shot against Enfield Town on Saturday. Picture: Danny Loo

Tuesday scorer Scott Bridges lines up a shot against Enfield Town on Saturday. Picture: Danny Loo

Danny Loo Photography 2017

Royston Town manager Steve Castle says his side were ‘very worthy’ of their 2-0 over Enfield Town in the FA Trophy first qualifying round on Saturday.

James Potton slides in for a tackle. Picture: Danny LooJames Potton slides in for a tackle. Picture: Danny Loo

Goals from man-of-the-match James Potton and the superb Adam Marriott sealed a 2-0 victory for the Crows at Garden Walk.

The experienced Castle - who is currently on crutches after undergoing knee reconstruction – said ‘it’ll be nice to get ourselves on a cup run’ after the win. The Crows did well in the FA Trophy last term, losing out to eventual semi-finalists Dulwich Hamlet.

Gus Scott-Morris holds off an opposition player. Picture: Danny LooGus Scott-Morris holds off an opposition player. Picture: Danny Loo

Reflecting on Saturday’s game, he said: ‘My analysis is that we kept the ball well and we created a sufficient amount of chances to win, but we need to hit the target and we need to work the goalkeeper a bit better. We had a real gilt-edged chance just after half-time, which we should have taken.’

Castle praised the Crows’ creativity, saying that they ‘played some great football’, but felt they could have been more efficient. ‘We need to keep the ball better, move the ball more quickly, and really open up teams with slick football’.

John Frendo takes on a defender. Picture: Danny LooJohn Frendo takes on a defender. Picture: Danny Loo

He is unsure how far his side will progress in the FA Trophy, but he is quietly confident. ‘I just don’t know how far we’ll go, but we’ve got another comparable game in the next round against Leatherhead, and we’re at home, too, which is important. It should be an equal contest.’

In terms of the league, the Crows are in terrific form. They have gone over a month unbeaten in the league, and have risen to tenth place – in striking distance of the play-offs. After the win against St Ives Town in mid-October, Castle said that Royston ‘have an outside chance’ of reaching them and that looks a real possibility now.

Scott Thomas goes in for a tackle against Enfield Town. Picture: Danny LooScott Thomas goes in for a tackle against Enfield Town. Picture: Danny Loo

Castle agrees, detecting a clear improvement in the past month compared to earlier in the season. He admits that his players ‘had a few teething problems’ in terms of discipline earlier in the season - as he puts it bluntly: ‘our main struggle was keeping eleven players on the pitch’.

But in contrast, Castle says, ‘the month of October has been good, and we’ve made some great progress.’ He is looking forward to seeing his players in Herts Senior Cup action, too – the tournament features Premier League side Watford, among other Herts senior sides.

Adam Marriott dribbles past the Enfield defence. Picture: Danny LooAdam Marriott dribbles past the Enfield defence. Picture: Danny Loo

But although he is ambitious, Castle – who made five-hundred-and-fifty years at professional level across a twenty-year playing career – is keenly aware that non-league football presents its own unique challenges. He said: ‘At this level, there are other variables that come into play – the fact that the players have other jobs being the main one.’

‘The lads have been very committed - we’ve kept a solid team and kept faith in them, which I hope they’ll be grateful for. With any luck, we can keep on progressing further’.

Adam Marriott fires in a shot from the edge of the area. Picture: Danny LooAdam Marriott fires in a shot from the edge of the area. Picture: Danny Loo

If Saturday’s performance is anything to go by – full of focused, fluent, fearless football against a well-established side – progress is all but assured.

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