Preview: Brennan calls on '˜12th man' to inspire Tudors to victory against Eastbourne

Hemel Hempstead Town will be eager to avenge their FA Trophy defeat at the hands of Eastbourne Borough when they welcome the Sports to Vauxhall Road tonight for a National League South fixture.

Tuesday, 8th March 2016, 10:15 am
Updated Tuesday, 8th March 2016, 11:21 am
Hemel Hempstead Town FC manager Dean Brennan. Picture (c) Terry Rickeard

The sides produced an 11-goal, 7-4 thriller in their last meeting, with Eastbourne going through despite Hemel having fought back from 3-0 down to lead 4-3 at one stage.

Hemel have since endured a poor run of form, but they bounced back to winning ways on Saturday courtesy of Harry Hickford’s last-gasp winner at Havant & Waterlooville.

And Tudors boss Dean Brennan is urging his side to kick on from there in what he is predicting to be a tough game tonight.

“Eastbourne are a very good team who are excellent going forward,” he said. “They have four fantastic strikers, all of them are players who I really like.

“They’ve got a good manager in Tommy Widdrington, a really good guy so I’m expecting another tough game. Every game we play against them is tough.

“They beat us 7-4 in the FA Trophy down at their place earlier in the season which sums up the dramatic season we’ve had. We showed great character to get back into the game, and then they showed good character to crack back on and go and win the game.

“They are in good form at the minute, and the games have been coming thick and fast for them.

“It’s a good incentive in this division because we’ve got an opportunity to go above them inn the table.

“The key for us is workrate, we need to keep to the gameplan and keep our togetherness.”

Brennan knows how important a win could be for his side to consolidate their mid-table position, and is calling on the Hemel fans to roar their side on to victory.

“We really need the Tudor Army to get right behind us because they need to be our 12th man tonight,” he said. “Hopefully we can get Vauxhall Road rocking, and get the supporters banging that drum for the full 90 minutes.”

Hemel go into the game with injury concerns surrounding Adam Bailey-Dennis, James Potton, Ben Herd and Graeme Montgomery, with Matt Spring, Kyle Connolly and Ed Asafu-Adjaye all long-term absentees.

Brennan, though, says he is working hard to put together a competitive side in time for tonight’s clash.

“People have to be positive and trust in this management team because I don’t think we’ve ever let them down,” he said.

“We are working hard, we are going out there and scouting players – we’re not just signing any old player. It takes time to find these players, because people have to realise that at this level, this is people’s full-time jobs.

“We are trying to pull in some favours because all my loans are up so I can’t get any more – you can only use five loans at a time.

“You might see a few different faces involved tonight, but we want to keep our unbeaten run going.”