Belper Town launched a comeback on Saturday to overturn a three-goal deficit at half-time in the FA Cup First Qualifying Round at home to Coalville Town.
Their efforts earned a replay, due to be played last night (Tuesday) at Coalville, after the News had gone to press.
Goals from Kieran Wells, Regan Edridge and Mark Ward in the second half drove the Nailers on, and manager Peter Duffield was pleased with his side’s character to ensure they didn’t suffer another defeat.
“We had a really bad spell for 15 minutes or so when we conceded three goals, and that seems to be the way this season so far.
“Once we concede one goal, we go on to concede on or two more very quickly, and that has to stop. But I was really pleased with the way we rallied in the second half and we proved that we can do it. However, again, we’ve scored three goals and still not won the game. It’s simple, we need to stop conceding so many goals.”
He continued: “Mark Ward has come on for us and made a huge difference. He holds the ball up well, brings others into play and you saw how good his goal was on the volley. When he plays with that authority he is as good as anybody.”
Duffield also responded to comments he made earlier in the week regarding the criticism he and his team have received, and insists his side are a highly motivated group who want to work for the club. “I’ve recently had offers come in for Aaron Pride and Billy Bennett, but I told them that I don’t want them to leave and they don’t want to leave either. They want to stay and fight for their place. This shows that our players care and it shows that I care. We only want positivity in this club, and the positivity in the changing room is great, despite what some people might think.”
Duffield concluded with a statement of praise, hoping the team’s comeback will be the ‘springboard’ his side needs to get their first win of the season. “We go to Coalville on Tuesday for the replay and hopefully the comeback on Saturday will spur us on to go and finish the job there. If we can get that first win, the shackles will have been lifted and hopefully we can start playing with a little more freedom.”
On Saturday, the Nailers make the short journey north to take on Buxton in league fixture kicking off at 3pm.
The Nailers have moved to sign central half Tom Burgin.
The central defender has moved to Belper Town from Scarborough Athletic.
Burgin has previously played for Rotherham United, Sheffield FC, Worksop Town and Swedish side Solleftea GIF.