Emley AFC boss Richard Tracey believes their second half to the season will be a big improvement on the first and insists that if they put a run of results together a play-off place isn’t out of the question. 

Emley currently sit 17th in the Toolstation Northern Counties East League Premier Division and are nine points off Bottesford who are in 6th. 

Tracey thinks that with a good run of form and a consistent team to pick from, there is no reason why the Pewits can’t climb the table quickly. 

He said: “We are wanting to try and get back-to-back victories which will push us up the table. If we put a good run together you never know, the play-offs might not be out of reach. We really want to put a run together to make sure we are comfortable in this division and I am confident we can do that. 

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“The league is very tough but we want to keep in touch with the top four or five teams in the division.” 

The Pewits have won just four games this season, drawing six and losing six. Their home form has been better than their away form where they’ve won three, drawn two and lost one.

Emley are looking to improve in the second half of the season

Looking back over the first half of their season Tracey said: “We aren’t quite where we want to be and our form in the first half of the season hasn’t been great, although we have picked up lately and only lost one of our last five games in all competitions. 

“We know we can do better, and we’ll be looking to do better going forward. 

“Our home form has been good, unfortunately we seem to be on a run of away games at the moment with how the cups have been drawn. 

“Our away form in contrast hasn’t been good enough in the league and we know we need to change that. 

“We are starting to get our core squad back now after some players have been out recovering from injury. The thought process is that by getting these lads back we can have a more consistent team and so we don’t have to bring in new players all the time.

“That in turn should mean performances improve and become more consistent and then the points start to be added to the board. 

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“I think the way to sum up the first half of the season is ‘frustration’ because we know we are better than we have shown. 

“There are elements of the game that we force too much which means we don’t hold on to the ball well enough. That’s because I think the players are trying to do too much at times. Sometimes it’s best to keep it simple rather than forcing a ball through which has little chance of coming off. It’s my job to fix that and work with the players in training.”

On Saturday the Pewits are back in cup action this time away at Newcastle Benfield (3.00) in the FA Vase second round. Newcastle knocked out fellow Huddersfield side Golcar United in the last round and Tracey hasn’t wasted any time asking Golcar boss Ash Connor about Newcastle’s strengths and weaknesses. 

He said: “We know this will be a tough game because they are a good side. If they weren’t they wouldn’t have got to this point. However we are confident of going through and want to go as far in the cup as we can.

“I have already spoken to Ash Connor at Golcar to get his thoughts on Newcastle. It was a real shame Golcar didn’t beat them because that would have been a great fixture – Emley v Golcar. 

“We now just have to beat whatever is put in front of us. I know we are all looking forward to the cup tie.”