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Bradford Park Avenue resources stretched for Brackley trip
Bradford Park Avenue boss John Deacey finds his options limited once more as he heads into yet another testing away game in the Blue Square Bet North.
After thinking his selection problems had eased, Avenue travel to third-placed Brackley Town on Saturday with six players sidelined and one out on loan attempting to gain match fitness.
Deacey had five players suspended for the New Year’s Day game against second-placed Guiseley and was four players down when they faced leaders Chester FC last Saturday.
But he said: “I’m back to square one because we have so many players missing for this game that we won’t have a full bench.
“Nathan Hotte is serving the last game of his three-match ban and Richard Marshall is suspended for one game after his sending-off at Stalybridge between Christmas and New Year.
“Alex Davidson came off with an ankle injury against Chester, Tom Corner only managed 20 minutes and Jamie Price played the second half with a torn hamstring.
“I can’t see any of those being fit and Martin Drury, who was back on the bench against Chester for the first time since his knee operation, had a setback in his recovery last Sunday, so we can’t risk him either.
“And Jamie Jackson has gone back to Worksop Town for another month.”
It is a problem Deacey could have done without as his side look for their first win in seven league games. He was hoping his club could start to rebuild momentum after a 0-0 draw against Chester.
One point from the last available 18 has not reflected the effort or entertainment that Bradford have offered during their run of tough games.
Avenue tumbled from fourth to tenth but just four points separate seven clubs from Bradford up to fourth-placed Gainsborough Trinity.
Brackley’s form has also dipped as they were the early pacesetters and headed the table for the first two months of the campaign. They still have a seven-point cushion over Gainsborough but are now 12 behind Guiseley.
Deacey added: “It will be another very difficult game for us but we will go there and give a good account of ourselves.
“We have proved over the last six games that we can compete with the top sides in this division.
“We know we have to convert our chances into goals but I just feel we need a full squad.
“Once again I will probably have players on the bench who in all honesty won’t be ready to come on and make a difference because they aren’t fully fit.”