Gulfer: Pressue off Barkingside

Barkingside manager Gus Gulfer (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Barkingside manager Gus Gulfer (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo) - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

Side manager tells his team to play with no fear at leaders Sudbury

Barkingside boss Gursel Gulfer says the pressure is off his team this weekend as they visit Ryman North leader Sudbury.

Side make the trip to Suffolk for a top-versus-bottom clash and the clubs also occupy opposite ends of the form guide with Barkingside without a win in their last six after a 1-1 draw with Soham Town last weekend, while Sudbury have won four over the same period.

With that in mind, there only looks to be one winner and Gulfer says he is happy for his team to play the role of the underdog on Saturday.

“There’s no pressure on us at all, but both teams will be giving it their all as we’re both in need of the points,” said Gulfer.

“There might not be any expectation on us, but it is the kind of game we want to get something from and feel we can.

“If we do get something from the game against Sudbury, it might be what we need to kick on in the final quarter of the season.”

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It looks increasingly unlikely the two sides will play each other next season with Sudbury currently 10 points clear at the top.

Barkingside, meanwhile, will be striving to avoid a return to the Essex Senior League after winning promotion from the division in the 2012-13 season.

It was a close-run thing between the sides when they met in October at Cricklefield Stadium, with Side going down 3-1.

And Gulfer hopes to show once again that his team are capable of causing any team in the league a few problems on their day, adding: “There’s not a lot between the teams in the league, but we have to make sure we work hard and maybe we can get something.

“We won’t make it easy for Sudbury, who probably expect a simple game and hopefully that works for us.”

While the Sudbury game comes first, Barkingside’s biggest match of the week arguably comes on Monday night when they entertain Waltham Abbey.

Side will be hoping to close the six-point gap to their opponents with the Abbots currently one place above the drop zone heading into Monday’s fixture.

And Gulfer is fully aware that a win against Abbey could prove to be a crucial result come the end of April.

“We’ve relied on a few teams in the last few months to slip up and now some of them, including Abbey, have started to pick up their results,” he added.

“It’s still in our own hands and if we get the results we need we’ll stay up, but we need to start doing our own shopping.”

Barkingside’s hopes of recording at least one success this week are likely to have been boosted by a few new recruits.

Baros Turkman, Jordan Wilson and Leon Smith have all joined the cause, while loanee Calvin Poku is still to return from injury.

Gulfer believes he now has the team he wants to keep Barkingside in Ryman North and hopes the players can repay that faith.

He said: “We seem to be slowly organising ourselves and we look like a team now, something I don’t think I could have said at the start of the season.”

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