Garstang boss bemoans player absences

Alan Coar has been one of Garstang's key absentees during the course of this season
Alan Coar has been one of Garstang's key absentees during the course of this season
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Garstang boss Lee Baker has told his players to commit to the cause if the club is to keep developing.

The Riversiders’ win against AFC Darwen last Wednesday leaves them seventh in the Hallmark Security League’s First Division North table with five games remaining.

However, they do not play again until next Wednesday when title hopefuls Avro visit the Riverside.

It has been a promising first year for the club at the former North West Counties League level after winning the West Lancashire League’s Premier Division in the 2017/18 season.

Nevertheless, Baker admitted to a feeling of ‘what if’ about the season so far.

Injuries and player unavailabilities have hindered his selection options, even if they have performed well against the leading sides.

A case in point is Jake Salisbury, who has missed four of the last five games and only came off the bench in the other.

“It’s been the story of our season,” Baker said, having finally been able to name an unchanged team when they picked up three points seven days ago.

“Jake Salisbury should be in our team every week because he’s arguably the best number nine in our team.

“Alan Coar and Ric Coar are fit but, right now, I can’t play him if he misses one or two games; I have to play the others.

“We’ve had injuries but there is also poor commitment from certain lads who are available one week but not the next week.

“I like to keep the same back four and the same midfield two in front of them.

“It’s obviously where Garstang need to improve compared to other teams.

“They aren’t a million miles off in terms of competing with the teams at the top but, financially, we can’t compete with the teams like Longridge Town, Avro and AFC Liverpool.”