Chester FC: Blues can bounce back in Southport clash


Daniel Heald

JON MCCARTHY has backed his side to bounce back against Southport tomorrow and halt their poor run of form.

A disappointing 4-2 defeat at Maidstone United last weekend led to the Blues boss apologising to fans for a ‘shambolic’ display.

A five-game winless run has seen Chester fall to 12th in the league and to bottom of the form table.

McCarthy was in reflective mood, however, and compared his side’s predicament to one faced earlier in the campaign.

“It was a very low bus on the way home and a very low Monday when we came back here,” said McCarthy about the mood in the camp following the defeat to Maidstone.

“But we are done with it now. We have to accept responsibility for the result but there’s no point in dwelling on it.

"From Tuesday onwards this week it’s been a different tone here.

“We were in this situation at the beginning of the season and I think that some people forget that.

“We had an excellent run somewhere in the middle and then we went through a period with some some tougher games with two away games within that. It was a very difficult month or so, we knew that.”

The recent sequence of results has threatened to derail a generally positive campaign for the Blues and McCarthy has emphasised the need to ‘put points on the board’.

He said: “It’s very important just to regain some confidence. We need to pick up the next point as quickly as possible and then get ourselves turned around.

“We’re in a little bad patch at the moment which is disappointing and we have to turn that around as soon as possible so people don’t forget how good these players have been this season.

“I think we’ll take a good away following to Southport and we need to produce for them.

“We need to have that moment at the end of the game where we’re going across to them and applauding them.

“We want to be receiving their recognition that we’ve picked up some points and put in a good performance.”

Currently languishing in 22nd place in the National League, Southport can pull clear of the relegation places with a win.

McCarthy admitted the game was ‘massive’ for both clubs and that Andy Preece’s side will be targeting three points.

He said: “They will see us as a real opportunity and will see this result as a key one if they’re going to have a chance of avoiding the drop.

“It will be a massive game for them, which gives them the motivation, desire and intensity but it also puts pressure on them as well when you have to get that type of result.

“We have to make sure we have the balance and that we can exploit some of their weaknesses. We have to ensure we’re right on top of our game and aware of how hard and fast they’ll come at us.” 

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