Non-league Matters: Lee Sinnott wants his Altrincham side to bounce back against play-off rivals Halifax Town

By Matt Davies

Altrincham boss Lee Sinnott called on his players to take the positives from defeat ahead of his sides’ crunch clash with fellow play-off contenders Halifax Town.

The Robins six-game unbeaten run came to an end against runaway leaders Chester last time out, but Alty remain well placed for a play-off spot.

Sinnott believes his sides’ second half performance deserved more and wants his players to replicate that when they visit the Shay.

“What we’re looking for is to bounce back after the Chester game,” said Sinnott.

“I thought we took the game to Chester in the second half and that’s the kind of performance we’re looking for this weekend.

A late goal killed off Altrincham’s resistance but not before top-scorer Damian Reeves missed an opportunity to level the scores against the champions-elect.

“I felt we had a strong case to say we could have got something from Chester,” explained Sinnott.

“We were pushing on and they got the second goal in the 83rd minute which was a bit unfortunate with the way it ricocheted but that’s the way tight games go.”

With seven games left of the season, including four against sides in the top seven, Sinnott is keen to get points on the board, starting against Halifax.

The two sides are yet to meet in the Blue Square Bet North but did play each other in the FA Trophy earlier in the season resulting in a 5-2 Halifax victory.

Sinnott admitted that day was a bad day in the office, thanks in part to a four minute Gareth Seddon hat-trick and the sending off of defender Danny Hall.

Altrincham won six of seven matches in March meaning Sinnott won the Manager of the Month award, but the Alty boss insisted his players should take the credit.

“I told the players that was recognition of their achievements,” he said. “There has to be a figure head but what they have achieved in that run deserves recognition.”

Duncan Watmore was rested against Chester but should return to face the Shaymen while Nicky Clee is also poised to return after recovering from a virus.

Sinnott expects to have everybody available for the trip to Halifax, while victory for the visitors could open up the play-off picture to more sides.

“Looking to the weekend we should have a fully fit squad but we’ll have to wait to see if there are any after training reactions,” he said.

Elsewhere Stalybridge Celtic visit Histon looking to return to winning ways while Droylsden host Corby Town at the Butchers Arms Ground.

In the Blue Square Bet Premier, Scott McNiven’s Hyde – unbeaten in six – can climb further away from the drop zone when they host Braintree Town at Ewen Fields.

Stockport County travel to Alfreton Town and need a win to escape the drop zone, as Ian Bogie’s side dropped into the relegation zone without playing this week.

Image courtesy of Altrincham FC, via YouTube, with thanks

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