New goal scorer is top of Walton’s wish list

Ilford boss slams strikers after defeat to Wingate

Wingate & Finchley 1 Ilford 0

ILFORD manager Colin Walton was left fuming at his wasteful forwards, as the Foxes fell to a narrow defeat against promotion contenders Wingate & Finchley on Saturday.

Ahmet Rifat beat Rob Budd in the third minute, but Ilford failed to score for the ninth time in the league this season and suffered their 18th defeat.

Angry boss Walton was frustrated that his team were unable to take their chances and feels their poor Ryman North First Division campaign has been down to their inability to replace last season’s top scorer.

“It was a lack of concentration from a short corner which undid us, but whilst I am happy with the way my defence are currently performing, it’s my underperforming strikers who are causing me to tear my hair out,” he said.

“Our current attacking personnel have proved incapable of performing to the level required and so the axe will be wielded for the next game after looking at some fresh faces in a few behind-closed-doors friendlies we have lined up before then.

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“Last season we had Troy Hewitt in our ranks, who has now passed 20 goals for Harrow Borough and is rumoured to be given a trial at QPR.

“We know what is required, we just have not been successful in replacing him, as to date all others have been found wanting.”

Adam Bolle was the preferred strike partner for regular Derek Hawtin on Saturday, but the former Leyton Orient youngster was guilty of missing four key opportunities in difficult conditions.

With the gusty wind hampering both sides, goalmouth action was limited and all of Ilford’s chances fell to Bolle, who missed the target each time.

Walton’s men are not in action on Saturday, but entertain league leaders Needham Market on Wednesday.

The Ilford boss is conscious of the difficult task ahead for his side, but remains hopeful they can get a much-needed result at Cricklefield.

“We had a long talk in training about the players’ requirements to concentrate fully in the first 15 minutes and last 15 minutes of games and to carry out tactical instructions we give them,” said Walton.

“With the league leaders Needham Market coming to town, who have scored three times the amount of goals we have, I have left the players in no doubt of their responsibilities.”

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