Lower Breck must perform at their best if they are to advance at Wythenshawe Amateurs’ expense, manager Gary Moore has admitted.
The Breck have shown their quality against so-called higher opposition with surprising wins over league leaders Wythenshawe Town, Bury AFC and AFC Liverpool so far this season.
However, they have struggled against teams in the lower reaches of the division and their inconsistency came back to haunt them as they let their goal lead over Winsford United slip last Saturday.
In the last round of the Macron Cup, they needed penalties to beat Abbey Hey. This time around they’re facing another North West Counties First Division North side but in the form of table-topping Wythenshawe.
“We’ve been to watch them, good side, good players, look at their record this season in the division below,” Moore told Off The Park.
“They’re obviously one of the favourites to go up, they’re a good side and it goes out of the window with cups but you’re there to be beaten.
“Look at us in the table, I don’t think you have any favourites in those games, it’s 90 minutes, it’s straight to pens, if you don’t do it in 90 minutes then the pressure is on but it’s the same as the last round, Daisy Hill, on the day we deserved to be beat.
“That says it all if it’s not the eye-opener and now you’re playing a team in a much better position then Daisy Hill are so it shows you how tough the game will be.
“We’ve got to be on it, we know how important the game will be, we know what we’ve got to do, got to go back to, we’re doing okay but you’re happier when you’re picking up wins.”
Touching upon their Jekyll and Hyde performances game-by-game, the Breck boss issued a demand for his players.
He said: “We’ve asked the question in a certain manner, if you look at our record this season, we’re losing to teams in the bottom half of the table after a couple more games we could be back down there.
“It’s not about overlooking, it’s about getting the lads up for when you’re playing your Wythenshawe Town’s, Bury’s, AFC’s and we did say that after the game, there’s a certain level of performance.
“Once you beat Wythenshawe Town 4-0, you’ve got to have a certain level of performance week in, week out and you’re not going to play to your greatest every week but you’ve got to have a standard and for me, we’ve fallen below it too many times this season.
“Prior to Wythenshawe Town, there’s a lot of games that I’m referring to there but we done that on Saturday, we went below the standard we need to win the game, you don’t get given any. Winsford aren’t a poor side, we seen it midweek, Wythenshawe being beat by Barnoldswick, 2-0 up then 3-2, Barnoldswick beat us so it is one of those leagues – anyone can beat anyone.
“You can certainly be beaten when not at your best or giving your true reflection and we’ve done it too many times. We certainly can’t do that on Saturday because you will get beat, get punished, they are a good side and results speak for themselves, from a management point of view, we won’t take them lightly but it’s up to the players to follow suit.”
Lower Breck followed on from their defeat to Winsford United with a point against rivals AFC Liverpool in a goalless draw.
Whilst they were looking for a reaction following their disappointment on Saturday, there were positives to take after continuing their clean sheet run and impressive form.
He continued: “I wouldn’t say below par in terms of performances, it’s a tough game AFC Liverpool, they’re a good side.
“I just thought both sides were devoid of any quality in the final third, I thought we were okay in the first-half, out of the two sides we looked like we were playing the better football but it broke down for both sides in the final third.
“At the same time, there was some body-on-the-line moments for both sides so we can’t point our fingers at attackers, it was one of those games where we cancelled each other out in the final third.
“Going on the back of Winsford, we wanted a reaction and bounce straight back. Up until Burscough and Winsford, we’ve been very good, we can’t fault the lads, Burscough we took the point but Saturday wasn’t a good performance.
“We got the first goal and from there, you think let’s kick on, when we’ve got the first goal this season, we’ve done very well but we didn’t hold it, within three minutes they scored and the second goal was poor – both goals were poor from our point of view.
“We were disappointed and you’d like to back it up with a win but it’s no easy game going to play AFC Liverpool away, we have to take the point, it’s a clean sheet, six in 10 games, there’s positives there but we’d like to get three points out of it – but not to be.”