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Barking boss Gardner wants side to bounce back from bad run of form on the road

PUBLISHED: 15:00 19 January 2018

Barking striker Martin Tuohy loses out in a battle against Potters Bar Town (Pic: Terry Gilbert)

Barking striker Martin Tuohy loses out in a battle against Potters Bar Town (Pic: Terry Gilbert)

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Barking will be hoping to bounce back after a recent dip in form as they face a week on the road.

The Blues will travel away to face AFC Sudbury at The Wardale Williams Stadium on Saturday (3pm), before making the short trip to local rivals Hornchurch at Bridge Avenue on Tuesday evening (7.45pm).

Justin Gardner’s men go into the hectic schedule on the back of just one win in their last seven matches and the manager wants his men to show their character.

He said: “I will be looking for them to bounce back and that bouncebackability is important and shows how good a team you are. They’re two very tough games, but it was a tough game on Saturday as well.

“We will be setting a target for the next four games and we must look to hit that.”

The former Aveley boss believes Sudbury will have improved massively since their meeting in October at Mayesbrook Park.

“We played Sudbury earlier this season and only beat them 1-0 but it was one of Mark Morsley’s first games in charge,” Gardner said.

“They will have improved much more since then as he has now got the squad he wants and has been there for a while.

“It was still a rebuilding job when we played them last time but he’ll be more settled now.”

Gardner also revealed he is keen to play on the 4G surface on Saturday and believes it will suit his side.

“We get to play on the 4G at least which I think will suit us as we like to try play football and it’s a lovely little ground, so we’ll look forward to that,” he added.

After their recent run, and 2-0 loss at Potters Bar on Saturday, the Blues boss also revealed he needs to make a few changes in the squad and will look to do so.

“The squad needs freshening up and whether that’s just to get us up in numbers and create more competition or improve entirely we’ll have to see,” he said.

Barking will also visit leaders Hornchurch, having drawn 1-1 last month and Gardner added: “The squad isn’t as strong as it was when we drew with Hornchurch last time and I feel to beat them or get anything we need our strongest side out.

“We always enjoy playing against the big teams like Hornchurch and we will go there, try to be competitive, and look to steal some points off them.

“I did say to Jim McFarlane the other day I still think they’ll win the league by at least 10 points.”

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