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Leamington v Telford: Up to Bucks to change things admits Paul Carden

Under-pressure AFC Telford boss Paul Carden knows nobody will feel sorry for him and the Bucks as they fight to escape a dreadful run of form.

Montel Gibson (18) (AFC Telford United Striker on Loan from Ilkeston Town FC) on the edge on Brackley Towns box about to shoot.
Montel Gibson (18) (AFC Telford United Striker on Loan from Ilkeston Town FC) on the edge on Brackley Towns box about to shoot.

The sorry Bucks have lost five games on the spin – including a home FA Cup exit – amid a winless run of 10 games.

Carden has been in charge since last November but has been unable to inspire Telford to wins this season and the Bucks find themselves second-bottom of National League North with fears of the drop circling and calls for change from a frustrated section of the club’s fanbase.

Next up is a short trip to Leamington’s New Windmill Ground where long-serving boss Paul Holleran has the Brakes up in seventh. The clash was brought forward to FA Cup third qualifying round weekend by Telford as both clubs exited the competition early.

“We can’t feel sorry for ourselves, no-one will pick us up, only us,” Carden said following Tuesday night’s home defeat to Brackley Town, who followed up that clash with the shock sacking of experienced manager Kevin Wilkin, despite sitting eighth.

“It’s a case of carrying on working, carrying on trying. I looked at results and Kettering beat King’s Lynn, which is probably a coupon-buster.

“That’s what we need to be. To try to get that bounce, fortune, luck that goes your way that doesn’t go your way when things go against you.

“There are reasons it’s going against us and we’ve got to figure it out, it’s not through a lack of effort or work. It can happen in football and has happened to better teams than us.

“You really find out about yourselves in these moments and we’ve got to discover what we’re really made of.”

A trio of home defeats in a row, including two this week, have left Telford flagging in an all-too familiar position in the lower reaches of National North.

Telford have not won away for almost two years but home fans have voted with their feet. There were fewer than 1,000 in attendance against struggling Boston on Saturday, a 2-1 defeat, and under 600 at the New Bucks Head for the Brackley defeat.

“It’s tough, I won’t lie, for everyone, fans saying ‘it’s not good enough’, it’s not good enough, we’ve lost five games on the bounce,” Carden added.

“I know it’s not good enough, I never signed up to be losing week after week and I don’t want to put my name to but I have to.

“The side is made up of names I’ve brought in, Montel’s another one, but I do feel there’s a team in there. We’ve just got to try to figure it out, we’re searching for the right formula and trying to be positive.

“It will turn, it will drop, people have got to stick with us and believe in us.”

Telford are expected to have new striker signing Montel Gibson available after he limped off on debut on Tuesday night, but it is thought the loanee from Ilkeston was struggling with cramp.

Left-back Brad Bood also remains available for the trip to Warwickshire despite his red card for two cautions against Brackley. Bood, 19, will serve his one-match ban the following weekend away at Peterborough Sports.

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