Non-league Matters: Joint-boss Anthony Johnson happy with Ramsbottom win, but wants more

By Ross McLean & Matt Simpson

Relieved Ramsbottom United joint-manager Anthony Johnson admitted his players received a dressing down after Saturday’s victory over Ossett Albion.

Despite Rammy holding a three-goal lead at the break, they laboured to a 4-3 win after a second-half fightback by the Yorkshiremen.

And Johnson was keen to make sure his players learnt from their mistakes as they look to secure an Evo-Stik League Division One North play-off place.

“We raced into a 3-0 lead after 15 minutes and after that we sat back,” he said

“At half-time we warned the lads against complacency as we were dominating the game but we sat off them and took our foot off the gas.

“And if you give sides a chance they will take it and that’s what’s they did, they gave us a bit of a scare but it was important to get three points.

“We went through a few things in the dressing room afterwards because if you don’t address things that are going wrong they can come back and haunt you.”

Key to Ramsbottom’s impressive season have been strikers Lee Gaskell and Jon Robinson and both were on target again at the weekend.

And Johnson was full of praise for a strike duo which he ranks as the best in the business.

“As a partnership they have been with us for nearly 3 years and between them they have scored close to 150 goals,” he added.

“No matter what level of football it is, when you have two forwards who know each other on the pitch and can finish like those two, it’s a recipe for success.

“They’re chalk and cheese, total opposites in terms of players but as a partnership they are the best I’ve seen at our level.

“To have two forwards who have more than 45 goals between them this season is brilliant, but it’s no less than we expected of them.”

The Rams currently lie second in the league as they bid for successive promotions after being crowned North West Counties Division One champions last April.

And while securing a home tie in the play-off semi-finals is the aim for the remainder of the campaign, Johnson insists an away draw would hold no fear for his charges.

“Ideally you want to be at home but our away record over the last four seasons is as good as you will ever see,” he said.

“In fact it’s better than our home record so it doesn’t really make a difference to the players whether we’re at home or away.

“If we can get a home tie great but if not we have a good away following and a good away record.

“But first and foremost we have got to get there – just to finish in the play-offs would be a massive incentive and a great privilege.”

Non-League Round-up

Blue Square Bet Premier

Hyde eased to a comfortable 3-0 overDartfordat Ewen Fields to move level on points with local rivalsStockportCounty.

An acrobatic finish from Scott Hogan – making his home debut – and strikes from Matthew Blinkhorn and Louis Almond secured the Tigers a second consecutive win.

Darije Kalezic’s County have now only won one in their last eight after slipping to a 3-1 defeat againstBraintreeTownatEdgeleyPark.

A goal from Dan Holman and a Kenny Davis double – one a penalty – put the visitors ahead before Alex Kenyon replied late on for scant consolation.

Blue Square Bet North

Altrincham continued their push for a play-off place with a 3-1 win away atColwynBay– who had veteran Frank Sinclair sent off with six minutes remaining.

A double from the league’s top scorer Damian Reeves and one from his strike partner Duncan Watmore secured the points while Jason Lampkin replied for the hosts.

Stalybridge Celtic drop to 16th and are now without a win in ten games after a goalless draw with Vauxhall Motors atRivacrePark.

Evo-Stik Premier Division

FC United ofManchesterlost 4-1 atWorksopTowndespite Matthew Wolfenden giving them an early lead, while Ashton United lost 3-2 at home to Rushall Olympic.

Evo-stik League Division One North

Mossley’s return to form continued with a 1-0 win atOssettTownwhile Trafford beat in-formBamberBridge2-0 at Shawe View.

Curzon Ashton won 2-0 at Harrogate Railway Athletic while New Mils and Radcliffe Borough both won 2-1 at Farsley and Goole respectively.

SalfordCitylost 2-1 toWarringtonTownatCantileverPark.

Picture courtesy of Rob Moss, with thanks

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