Runcorn Linnets manager Dave Wild has outlined that they must beat Bootle this weekend to boost their efforts to secure their place in the playoffs.
Linnets sit fourth ahead of their trip to the Bucks but they have Clitheroe, Witton Albion and Mossley breathing down their necks going into the final eight games of the season.
Last time out they couldn’t break down Glossop North End’s stern defence but the point took them over their playoff rivals.
After their stalemate, Wild has heaped importance on this weekend’s clash with Steve McNulty’s side.
“Runcorn are seen as a scalp at this level and that’s through the work of Calum and the group, work of the chairman and what we’ve done this season, it accumulates to teams wanting to beat us,” he said speaking to Off The Park.
“It’s up to us to get used to that, we’ve got to show performances and our mettle now to make sure we get over the line, this is by no means an easy game. Dropping points against Glossop has made it an even bigger game.
“We’ve got to win the game, it doesn’t matter who we’re playing, home, away or neutral, we set up to win and we’ll be going to Bootle to try and win.
“It’ll be no different for us, the players know what they need to do, we’ve got a thick and competitive team to get through the run-in, if people want to give me their shirts back, they can but right now, we’ve got a settled group, I’ve got trust in all of them but they know what they’ve got to do to get over the line.”
Games in the Northern Premier League are ticking down and for Linnets, their trip to Bootle starts a run of two consecutive away games as they travel to Macclesfield next weekend.
The playoff race is heating up, the Runcorn manager expressed his disappointment at results throughout the campaign which have resulted in them facing a battle to finish in the top five.
“Any means necessary, we could finish second, third, fourth or fifth,” he added. “As long as we get in, we’ll play anyone, it’s over to us to get in, we’ve got a strong enough group to do it, good enough club to do it.
“But we have killed ourselves too much this season, this should’ve been done and dusted for me, if you take five or six points [from those dropped] we’re probably already in but we’ve made it tricky for ourselves, it’s by hook or crook we get over the line, I’m not bothered where we finish or how many points, we have to make sure we’re in that top five.”