Newark Town manager Luke Parsons discusses promotion, Notts Senior Cup and tough run of Central Midland League North Division fixtures
Newark Town manager Luke Parsons says his side have an extra point on title rivals Dinnington Town after their 2-2 draw.
The clash between the sides that sit first and second in the CML North Division did not disappoint.
The first-half saw four goals, while the following 45 minutes saw two red cards and a last-gasp save.
It left Town nine points clear, having played three games more, but The Blues’ goal difference is 30 higher (+50 to +20) which Parsons said gave him great confidence.
“I’d call it an additional point in a way,” he said. “A 30-goal swing in three games is a lot and, especially in our league, where there aren’t many teams that you batter.
“We knew we had to go there and not lose, and we know the advantage is in our hands now. We see it as we are half way to achieving our aim.
“But, we still have to stay focused because it can only take one slip up — you have to stay level-headed.”
Both sides have a similar fixture list at this point in the season, something which is not always the case in step seven football, and Parsons said if his side could make it through the next month unscathed, there would be a new confidence around the club.
“I personally think they will drop points,” he said. “But we have a Retford game that will be tough.
“If you look at all three games we have played against them (Retford) they have been draws.
“So, on the balance of things, we could lose points there.
“The good thing is, including today, over our next three games we would have played second, third and fourth, and it doesn’t get any more difficult than that.
“If we come away from that with maximum points, we will be very confident.”
Earlier in the week, Town recorded a 3-2 win over Awsworth Villa, which moved The Blues into the last 16 of the Notts Senior Cup.
But Parsons isn't letting that distract him from his number one target — promotion.
“We have taken that stance with all the cups this season, the target is promotion," he said.
“Of course it is good if you go on a bit of a cup run, but it can sometimes hinder you.
"You are dealing with extra games, potential injuries, and we know in the Notts Cup you have got the likes of Flowserve, Carlton Town, Nottingham Forest under-23s, Notts County and Basford United.
"It would take a minor miracle for us to win it if we are being realistic.
"We have always took it with a pinch of salt. You only have to look at the teams left in it. There's only really us, Bingham (Town) and Southwell (City), should they win their games, who are step seven.
“That’s only three step seven teams in the last 16 places and the chances are we will get a team in a higher division than us."
Despite putting the cup second to the league, Parsons, who spoke openly and honestly about Town's chances, said it would be disappointing if The Blues didn't pull one of the tournament favourites at home.
“Yes, definitely (we want to play one of the better sides at home)," he said. "We are realistic people, so why not get Carlton Town, Basford United, Flowserve or even a County or a Forest.
"We want a team that, on paper, is a lot better than us.
“If we draw Forest or County it is an automatic home game at this early stage so what a draw that would be. That's what were hoping for."
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