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Grantham Town joint boss Rawden says Gingerbreads will fight till end of season

Grantham Town’s win over Matlock Town on Saturday represented something of a milestone, in that they recorded their first clean sheet in 28 games.

Gingerbreads joint managers Paul Rawden and Russ Cousins fielded a revamped back four as new signings Sam Cartwright and Connor Bartle partnered up with the now fully fit Tom Ward and Ross Barrows.

Behind the back four was Rawden’s real hero of the match, goalkeeper Sam Andrew who pulled off a number of saves early in the second half to keep the scores level after Matlock changed formation to a 4-3-3.

Rawden said: “Sam has been around various places and hasn’t had a real run in a side. With Adriano Basso [goalkeeping coach], they’ve looked at his training, what he eats and where they can improve things. I think we’re already seeing the benefits.

“He was named Saturday’s man of the match by the group of supporters who had sponsored the match.”

With the two sides locked at 0-0 going into half time, Rawden said he was really pleased with how his side stuck to their task and how they had to get through Matlock’s usual style of play. He said: “We said at half time that the gaps were starting to be created as Matlock were looking to push on. After changing to the 4-3-3 they became bigger.

“With Chris Dawson and Michael Tweed, we know they can get the ball down and run through the middle. Then there is Jordan Adebayo-Smith who can get in behind players with his pace.”

And it was Dawson and Adebayo-Smith who combined to score the Gingerbreads’ opening goal. The goal would have been a contender for another goal of the week but Adebayo-Smith eclipsed it to double Grantham’s advantage.

Rawden said: “I’ll be honest, I thought he’d lost the ball, but he’s managed to trick his way to the edge of the box and send in another rocket. It really is great to see. We’re just really grateful to have him with us at the moment and to be getting the rewards for it.”

With most of the teams around the Gingerbreads also winning on Saturday, Rawden said he felt that the fight will go to the end of the season: “We know every point is huge, to be winning our home games is massive. It gives the supporters some real positivity, but we know that each week we have to be fighting.

“It’s down to us to get results and pull ourselves clear. We’re being competitive, we’ve got to keep that up and we’re here to keep the club up.”

Looking to tomorrow’s game at Hednesford Town, who have edged above the Gingerbreads on goal difference, Rawden said: “Saturday is another massive game for us, but we had a good training session on Tuesday night.

“We’ve gone through where we think we can improve things, we’ve been through the positives of Saturday. We’re looking forward to it.”


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