Grant Black wants Belper Town to replicate ‘frightening’ attacking play

Grant Black congratulates match-winner Nathan Curtis. Pic by Tim Harrison.
Grant Black congratulates match-winner Nathan Curtis. Pic by Tim Harrison.

Grant Black is looking for his Belper Town side to scare opposing defences this season, after a “frightening” attacking display in their season opener.

The Nailers got the edge in a seven-goal thriller with Market Drayton Town on Saturday in a game which changed momentum three times in the second half.

A late Nathan Curtis screamer sealed three points for travelling Belper in a 4-3 win on opening day of the 2019/20 BetVictor NPL South-East Division season.

Black - pleased with his side’s overall effort in the curtain-raiser - wants to see that type of attacking performance replicated throughout the season.

“We should have been out of sight after 25 minutes,” he said. “We were frightening going forward - scored one goal and missed a few good chances.

“We went in at 1-1 but we were confident the game was there for us to win. We ironed a few things out at half time then scored early to make it 2-1.

“We had a one-on-one where Nathan Curtis should square it to make it 3-1 and then you’d be thinking ‘that’s probably game over’ but we didn’t.

“Then we shot ourselves in the foot by giving two bad goals away from our point of view.

“Even at 3-2 we were full of confidence that we were going to get more chances, it was just a case of if we could take them in that last 25 minutes.

“We changed it with substitutes, then a 3-2-5 formation, we got a goal back then Nathan sticks one in the top corner.

“If you could win a game every week then that is the way to do it but I’m not sure it was good for the nerves.”

And added: “The Belper fans came in good numbers and we didn’t want to disappoint.

“We feel like they’ve seen a good game and saw a lot of things to be encouraged by.

“When that winner goes in then there were people running about celebrating, which was good to see.

“Hopefully we can deliver those emotions on a regular basis - but not always leaving it to the last few minutes.”

Belper picked up three points on a day which can see a few surprise results.

Black warned against going up against a wounded animal when Frickley Athletic visit the Raygar Stadium on Tuesday night, after they lost at home to Chasetown.

“We need to replicate a lot of the attacking play we showed on Saturday and if we do that then we’ll score lots of goals again,” Black said ahead of the fixture.

“We need to tighten up on a few things defensively. We conceded three goals but we didn’t look in danger at any point.

“I’m confident going into tomorrow but the lads will know they’re one game in and nothing is done and dusted straight away.

“We need to concentrate, keep the same effort and show the same attitude as well as the football we displayed for as long as we can.”

And added: “Frickley had a tough start but they could be a wounded animal on Tuesday night.

“They’ve had a big turnaround of players who are still gelling together, but still managed to keep two or three really good players.

“Jacob Hazel and players like that can punish us if we’re not at it so we need to make sure it’s not an ‘After the Lord Mayor’s Show’.”

Belper take on Sporting Khalsa at home in the preliminary round of the FA Cup on Saturday before travelling to Ilkeston Town on Bank Holiday Monday.

Black said: “We made three changes with 20 minutes to go on Saturday, which didn’t weaken the team in any way.

“We’ve got a good 17-18 players this season all committed to being part of a group.

“We can look to freshen it up if we need to over the weekend without weakening the team in any way.

“That’s a massive bonus for us.”