UCL preview - Starmer won’t be over-cautious for Diamonds’ season-defining clash

Action from AFC Rushden & Diamonds' 4-0 success at Raunds Town on Saturday. Picture by Kit Mallin
Action from AFC Rushden & Diamonds' 4-0 success at Raunds Town on Saturday. Picture by Kit Mallin

Mark Starmer insists there is no way he will adopt a cautious approach as AFC Rushden & Diamonds head into a season-defining clash with Eynesbury Rovers in Division One of the ChromaSport & Trophies United Counties League tonight (Tuesday)..

The second-placed Diamonds know that victory at the Dog & Duck will put them six points clear of third-placed Rovers and on the brink of promotion in their first campaign as a senior side.

But defeat would see Eynesbury leapfrog Starmer’s men into the second promotion place on goal difference with both sides having three games to play after this evening’s clash.

It could go down as a “must not lose” game for Diamonds but Starmer insists their approach won’t change as they look to win every remaining game following a comfortable 4-0 success at Raunds Town on Saturday.

“It is going to be a massive night for us,” the Diamonds boss said.

“It is is a six-pointer if ever there was one and we are well aware that Eynesbury are a good side. I knew they would be right up there.

“We will do what we have done every week and that is set up to go and win the game. We need to win all of our remaining matches and that is the way we will play it tonight.

“I don’t want to be over-cautious. We will be wary of their threat but our approach won’t change.

“It was a great win at the weekend because we had a few missing and we scored three quick goals in the first half that settled it.

“It is going to be a very hard game for us tonight but the rewards are there at the end of it if we can get the right result.

“I am sure there will be a big crowd in for it and the fans have been fantastic all season. They have made a big difference for us and I am sure they can play a part in this one as well.”

Rushden & Higham did their neighbours a huge favour at the weekend as they claimed a superb 2-0 win over promotion-chasing Oadby Town.

The Lankies, who are in the NFA Junior Cup final next month, are also back in action tonight when they head to Northampton Spencer.

Leaders Sileby Rangers will also be looking to enhance their promotion hopes this evening as they take on Ian Walker’s Thrapston Town side at Fernie Fields while Rothwell Corinthians are also in Northampton as they pay a visit to ON Chenecks.

It is another big night for Stewarts & Lloyds in the Premier Division as they take on Shepshed Dynamo at Occupation Road, knowing a point will ensure their safety for another season.

Daren Young’s side produced one of the results of the season at the weekend as they beat third-placed Spalding United 2-0, which left them six points clear of second-from-bottom AFC Kempston Rovers, who have just two games left.

So if S&L avoid defeat tonight the preparations for next season in the top flight will be able to begin.