Attfield close to return

Crows boss eager to get back

ROYSTON TOWN manager Paul Attfield says he is confident he will be back in the dugout in January.

The Crows boss took time off due to health reasons at the beginning of October, and hasn’t been in charge of the team since his last match on October 2 – a 3-1 FA Trophy defeat at home to Uxbridge. Since then, his assistants Duncan Easley and Martin Paine have taken responsibility of the first team – overseeing a spell of games that saw the Crows reach the top of the table before Saturday’s defeat at Slough Town.

Attfield, right, says he has been kept fully informed of developments both on and off the pitch during his period away, but admits he is looking forward to getting back to business.

“I approached (chairman) Steve Jackson and the board to tell them that I would need to take time away from football, as the medication that I was going to be on would knock me a bit,” Attfield told the Royston Crow. “Everyone was really supportive of my decision, and I think the break has been good for me. I’ve never had a break during the season before, but I’m fully on the road to recovery now and I’ve indicated to the club that I will be back in the middle of January.

“I’ve been kept in the loop all the time. I’ve been to some of the games, and I’ve managed to get to other games as well when I’ve been able to.”

Attfield says he has been enormously impressed with how the team has been performing in the league, and that the confidence gained from their excellent league form will stand them in good stead going into the second half of the campaign.

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“They’ve been doing so, so well,” he said. “I think they’ve only had two defeats in 15 games and they won seven league games in a row – and if somebody had offered me that at the start of the season I would have bitten their hand off.

“I think the players are playing without the same level of pressure that was on us last season, and some of the football they have been playing has been excellent.

“Duncan hasn’t had too many injuries to worry about which has helped, and the side has been very settled. The results and performances against the top teams in the division have been very good, and on our day we know we can beat anybody.”

Attfield insists there is no reason why Royston can’t continue to compete at the top end of the Evo-Stik Southern Central Division, and that if they are up there at the end of January there will be everything to play for.

“We’re gradually putting ourselves into the equation and if we can keep it going then who knows what will happen. Obviously you need a lot of luck to get out of this league,” he said.

“I don’t think there will be any new additions along the way as the squad is very settled. This was always going to be a season where the players were given the chance to prove themselves at this level and they are doing that.

“There are a lot of tough matches to come, and like we found out last season – the nearer you get to that finishing line, the pressure can affect teams in different ways so anything can happen. There is a lot of water to pass under the bridge yet but we have done brilliantly.”