Tommy Wright has set out the latest challenge to his Corby Town players as they prepare for another key match at Slough Town tonight (Tuesday).
The Steelmen moved back to the top of the Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division at the weekend thanks to a 1-0 win at play-off chasing Redditch United, despite having goalkeeper Paul Walker sent off when the game was still goalless.
Poole Town, who still have three games in hand on Corby, suffered a shock 2-1 home defeat to Bideford, which ensured the Steelmen moved a point clear at the summit.
Both teams are in action tonight as Poole travel to Arlesey Town and Corby boss Wright knows his side have a chance to remain top of the pile until at least just after the Easter weekend if they can continue their impressive form, which has seen them lose just two of their last 18 league matches.
And while the Steelmen manager is wary of tonight’s opponents, who won 5-3 at Cirencester Town at the weekend, he insists his players “must show they want it” as they battle away for the title.
“We match Poole’s fixtures for the next couple of weeks right up until after Easter Monday,” Wright said.
“So there is the challenge for the boys. Let’s try to win the next four games and keep the pressure on Poole.
“If we can do that then we will still be top and then it will be up to Poole to deal with it.
“Slough are a capable side and you never really know which version will turn up.
“I think that’s been a recurring theme for them. They have not found the consistency.
“But they can be dangerous, they score goals and we are definitely not thinking we can turn up and just take the three points.
“It’s a tough away game on a Tuesday night when the lads have all been at work during the day.
“Everything comes into play but I don’t hide behind excuses when it comes to pitches or fixture scheduling or anything like that and the players have had that drilled into them.
“Between now and the end of the season it’s all about who wants it the most.
“We have a chance to be on top of the table for the next four games and our boys must show they want it.”
Corby’s task has been made that bit harder with them being without 21-goal top scorer Spencer Weir-Daley, who misses tonight’s clash as well as the final home game of the season against Dorchester Town at the weekend.
Weir-Daley signed off by grabbing the crucial winner at the weekend but has now linked up with the Montserrat national side for their FIFA World Cup qualifiers this week.
And Wright believes now is the perfect time for frontman Elliott Chamberlain to “step up”.
“Elliott was showing some good form when Spencer wasn’t firing and the roles reversed a little bit because Spencer got back into the team and hit a purple patch,” the Corby boss added.
“Now Elliott has got to step up. He is a very capable footballer, we have all seen that.
“It’s a big void to fill with Spencer not available. I am back (from suspension) and I am an option from the bench.
“But I look around at the likes of Wilson, Claudiu and Greg and there are still plenty of goals in this team.
“The lads have got to step up but I would never say we have been a one-player team at any stage this season.”
Wright will have assistant-manager David Clarke back by his side tonight after he missed the last few games due to work commitments.
The only absentee from the playing squad will be centre-half Edi Appleton, who has suffered a setback in his recovery from an Achilles injury.