Ilford boss encouraged by ‘best display of the season’

Colin Walton felt Ilford produced their best performance of the season so far in their 2-1 defeat to league leaders Needham Market on Saturday.

The division’s top scorer Sam Newson bagged a brace, either side of Clydie Roberts’ goal for the Foxes, who slipped to their fifth straight league defeat.

But Walton was encouraged by his side’s display against their high-flying opponents.

“I thought beforehand it was going to be a shoot-out, but we played very well,” said Walton. “It was probably our best performance of the season, we just couldn’t stop that man Sam Newson.

“He was the difference between the two sides, but I thought we played very well against one of the favourites for promotion.

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“We took the game to them. We started well in the second half and deserved our equaliser. Their second goal was a bit unfortunate, it took a bobble, there was a horrible bounce and that man again was there to finish.

“I couldn’t fault the effort though, we played very well and I’ve got to take the positives out of that.

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“The signs are definitely there that we are becoming a better side.”

Ilford are rooted to the foot of Ryman Division One North and are five points adrift of safety.

Walton takes Ilford to 16th-placed Cheshunt on Saturday and with only one player missing from the side that performed so admirably against Needham Market, the boss senses this could be the game to kick-start their season.

“On recent form we’ve got to be confident we can pick up points this weekend. It’s time the hard luck stories are put to rest,” he said.

“We’re away from home, so we’ll probably go into the game more relaxed. It’s a difficult surface at Cricklefield and it probably doesn’t help us anymore than the opposition, because we try to play football, even when sometimes we probably shouldn’t.

“We’ve got a run of winnable games coming up, against teams who probably haven’t got the quality to make the difference in a game like Needham Market had.

“Wale Adedoyin is the only player that will be missing, but I want to try and keep the same team, more or less, and build some consistency.”

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