Get the three points at York City and it will put everyone at ease, says Bromley boss Neil Smith
BROMLEY manager Neil Smith says a win at in-form York City on Tuesday night will ease the tension around the club.
Bromley have failed to score in six of their seven games and have slipped down to sixteenth-place in the Vanarama National League table and have six games left to play.
The Ravens are only six points clear of the relegation zone, which is currently occupied by Torquay United (43 points), York City (42), North Ferriby United (36) and Southport (34) and their trip to Bootham Crescent is one that they cannot afford to lose.
Bromley went down to a 1-0 defeat to league leaders Lincoln City at the weekend, which was the Ravens first defeat to The Imps since losing there 8-1 in The FA Cup Second Round back in December 1938, admittedly, the two clubs have only played each other in four league games since then.
“Obviously the result wasn’t great but the performance the boys put in was very good and deserved to come away with something,” said Smith.
Smith is concerned about the lack of goals coming from his players and they need to rekindle their goalscoring touch.
Smith added: “Massive. To only lose the games 1-0. We should’ve beat Chester, we should’ve got something on Saturday, hitting the post and having a penalty appeal turned away.
“It is that goal. The only goal we’ve scored in the last few weeks was North Ferriby (a 3-0 win at home on 11 March).
“I’m not just putting it on the forwards but the midfield players, winger or centre half from a set-play. We just have to do better getting a goal.
“I think we just need a goal to ease our problems. Since Brandon Hanlan left (after scoring four goals whilst on loan from Charlton Athletic) the goals have dried up so it’s a case of everyone sticking together or not blaming each other or one certain person for missing and see if we can get that goal.”
York City were relegated from League Two last season and have picked up back-to-back wins over Macclesfield Town (3-1) and Braintree Town (3-0) going into the game.
Smith said: “Another tough game. It’s a massive game. It’s a massive game for them. Obviously a club the size of York, only coming down last year from the League would not expect them to be sitting in the bottom three.
“I think Gary Mills has gone out and invested in a load of players trying to keep them up, so it will be a tough ask away from home but if the boys can put in a performance like they did on Saturday then hopefully we can come away with something.”
Smith believes one more win will ensure Hayes Lane will be hosting the likes of Wrexham in the Vanarama National League next season.
This is Wrexham’s ninth season in the top flight of non-league football and Bromley made their top-flight debut against them on the opening day of last season with Bromley winning 3-1 at Hayes Lane.
“Again, it’s a great game for the club. We’ve got Wrexham playing at home at Bromley,” said Smith on Saturday’s visitors to Hayes Lane.
“It’s our second year in it. I’d like to know how many years Wrexham have been in this division and they’re only five points above us, so we’re not doing bad.
“There’s a bit of negativity around the club and there doesn’t need to be. I’ve spoken to somebody at the club today, I don’t know how long Forest Green (19 seasons), Lincoln (seven seasons in two spells) and Wrexham have been in this division?
“This is our second year and we’re only getting crowds of around 1,300 and we’re competing against these big teams and I think the boys have done absolutely brilliantly.
“I’d just want to get the win as quickly as possible and put everybody at ease and enjoy the last few games.”
Bromley finished their debut National League campaign in fourteenth-place in the table on 60 points and fifth-from-bottom Guiseley stayed up on 49 points.
A few weeks ago, 50 points looked to be the magical safety figure, but Smith agrees that at least 52 points are needed to ensure Bromley will be staging National League football at Hayes Lane in August.
“I would agree. I’ve got a lot of people turning around and saying we’ve got enough points, even a draw would keep us up and on the other hand I’ve got people going we’re going to get relegated on 49 points.
“Forty-nine points came 20th last year so until we’re mathematically up we’re in a dog-fight with everybody else, although we’re a win away from being in the top 12, everyone’s, rightly so, looks down on the ones coming up.
“Get the three points and it will put everyone at ease. Get a draw tomorrow night and I think a point might be enough as well.”
Wrexham arrive at Hayes Lane in tenth-place in the table – another game that Bromley have got to be looking at winning.
Smith is keen to negotiate terms with players as he plans for next season.
“You never stop, I’m already planning. We know what we need. We obviously need a goalscorer or two,” admitted Smith.
“There’s a couple of boys we’re talking to at our club that we’re looking to keep on. We know what we’re doing, it’s hard to get them on board. They want to wait until we’re safe, we want to make sure we’re safe before we start having a chat to people.
“We’ve got ideas in our head with what we want to do and where we want to go but I’ve got a big job for this season still to go yet.
“If we do down on 49 points it will be unthinkable because that must mean everyone’s done well at the bottom to stay up. There was someone who went down on 55 points one year.”
Bromley then complete their campaign against Barrow at home on Good Friday, 14 April, 15:00); away to Eastleigh (Easter Monday 17 April, 15:00), at home to Guiseley (22 April) and a trip to Gateshead (29 April, 12:15).
Visit Bromley’s website: www.bromleyfc.tv
York City v Bromley
Vanarama National League
Tuesday 4th April 2017
Kick Off 7:45pm
At Bootham Crescent, York, YO30 7AQ