Wands manager challenges side to fulfil potential

News Shopper: Ian Jenkins Ian Jenkins

CRAY Wanderers boss Ian Jenkins feels his side have underachieved so far this season.

Wanderers sit 12th in the Isthmian Premier Division but are just seven points from the play-offs going into Sunday’s home clash with East Thurrock.

Jenkins is still hopeful of a push for promotion in the second half of the season but on the whole is pleased with his squad’s performances.

“It hasn’t been a great first half of the season,” Jenkins explained.

“We have massively underachieved results wise, but if you look at our week-in-week-out performances it is a different story.

“Having 21 points from 16 games is not good enough but I would say we have only deserved to lose two or three games this season.

“We have a good squad who are putting in good performances so I think we can push on and challenge for promotion.”

The Achilles heel of Cray’s season has undoubtedly been their home form with just two wins on their own patch this season.

Added to this they have had to postpone numerous games in recent weeks and also rearrange others to suit ground-owners Bromley.

Home advantage is supposed to spur a team on and Jenkins is clearly worried about how it has affected their chances.

“Our home form has been terrible,” he said.

“It seems weird considering our away form has been extremely good.

“I can’t quite work it out, it is very confusing.

“For example against Kingstonian we could have scored a hatful early on but they went down the other end and scored three goals late on and we lost.”

Wanderers now face a hectic schedule over the coming weeks with previous postponed games all taking place in January and the annual chaos of the Christmas period stretching any side’s squad.

However, Jenkins is relishing having three games in a week and feels the players can respond to it.

“It doesn’t help financially, but on the pitch I like it,” he said.

“Playing Saturday-Tuesday, Saturday-Tuesday shouldn’t be a problem as the squad is fit and eager.

“Also you get to play the teams around you in the league and the real six-pointers come about.

“Like I said it doesn’t help the gate receipts and the income in December or November but if you put three or four wins together, it could change your season.”

Cray are set to have a fully fit squad to face East Thurrock on Sunday (3pm) in a mid-table clash which could be vital come the business end of the season.

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