Under-fire Chester FC Jon McCarthy calls on club to stick together to survive drop


Charlie Croasdale

JON MCCARTHY has called on the club, the players and the fans to stick together as they aim to make sure they’re playing National League football next season.

Chester, who are just four points off the drop zone, head to Sutton United for their penultimate game of the season on Saturday.

“There's stuff as a manager you can control,” said McCarthy, who has come under fire from some sections of Blues’ fans.

“When you start to make excuses, blame players, luck, referees, that's when you look weak.

“They are my players, they're who I wanted here. To a man they give us everything when they go out there and they've performed well this season and got us into a good position that we just need to finish off now.

“I don't read it, the forums, the media, but I get the feeling from people round here. I want to say to the majority, stop listen to that minority and stop letting them influence you.

“On the other hand, I'm accountable and it's up to us to go and get a response at Sutton.”

The Blues travel to Sutton knowing three points will make them mathematically safe from the drop, although McCarthy reiterated his belief their current total of 52 points will be enough.

“I reiterate there's no complacency but I do think it was done at Torquay,” insisted McCarthy, who remains without the banned Kane Richards.

“It's very much about us doing it now for the last two games, let's get the win, it's what we want but I do think 52 with our superior goal difference should be enough.

“And we achieved that and that's a much fairer reflection of what we've done this season.

“Sutton have had a decent run, they've drawn against Southport and Dagenham and I'm watching their 3-0 win over Gateshead, which looks like a demoralised Gateshead team who have come to the end of their play-off charge.

“You can see Sutton are very effective at playing on their own pitch. We'll know their shape, the system and their standout players from the cup run.

“We've trained on the astro turf this week and mostly on it since December so I'm not concerned about that.”

“Deacon is the one who everyone knows but they have good strong players like a lot of team. Their cup run probably hindered them in terms of games but the money they've generated, it means they could be very strong force next season with a few signings.”

It has been levelled at McCarthy in recent weeks that his first-team players have let him down following a run of eight defeats in 10 matches but he refused to blame excuses for their drastic loss of form.

“The senior players have stepped up for me all season,” he added.

“I think it's a weak manager who looks for excuses. There's a time to review everything at the end of the season, and we will look at all of it.”

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