Sholing boss Diaper now thinking ahead

Sholing manager Dave Diaper says injuries and suspensions will come into his team selection thinking for the rest of the season.

Tomorrow’s match, which sees them travel to Cowes on the Isle of Wight, is their fourth game since Thursday.

Diaper refuses to complain about the congestion, but says that availability for other games is now a factor in his thinking.

“As a manager you always want and demand that players give 100% and try to win every game but injuries and suspension have to be accounted for.

“We are still missing Jamie Bulpitt with a hip flexor problem which is a shame as he’s very important for us.

“We have got to be mindful though because of the game against Team Solent on Tuesday. Cowes had an excellent win at Lymington on Tuesday and they’ll be tough for us.”

Tuesday night’s Wessex League Cup semi-final against Solent will take the number of games for the Boatmen to five in just 12 days.

The fixture build-up has been difficult for his side, and Diaper suggested that Manchester United manger Jose Mourinho doesn’t have it as tough as some.

Sholing manager Dave Diaper feels the recent schedule has been tough on his team (CREDIT: RAY ROUTLEDGE)
Sholing manager Dave Diaper feels the recent schedule has been tough on his team (CREDIT: RAY ROUTLEDGE)

“It’s had a massive impact on squad. Mourinho says about his team playing on Sunday, mine work during the day and play a fixture against the team top of the league.

“They could have scheduled it better, no game is ever ideal on Thursday but at this level availability of pitches dictates.

“It was a long game against Brockenhurst (The Southampton Senior Cup semi-final that Sholing won 3-2 in extra-time) we had to make eight changes Saturday against Whitchurch and when you do that at any level you’ll be on the wrong end of a scoreline.

With Sholing now trailing league leaders Moneyfields by 17 points, Diaper says the season is about consolidating a top four spot and performance in the two cups.

“With our budget, fourth is probably about right for us even if it’s a step back from second last season.

‘It would be a good season for us if we came fourth with the possibility of winning a couple of trophies.”