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Barking boss Gardner eager for squad to keep grounded as they climb up the table

PUBLISHED: 10:00 10 January 2020

Barking's Joe Bruce in action against Bedfont (pic Terry Gilbert)

Barking's Joe Bruce in action against Bedfont (pic Terry Gilbert)

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Barking manager Justin Gardner wants his squad to keep their feet on the ground as they edge closer to the Isthmian League South Central play-off places.

Junior Dadson on the ball for Barking (pic Terry Gilbert)Junior Dadson on the ball for Barking (pic Terry Gilbert)

The Blues head into a clash with Northwood at Mayesbrook Park on Saturday determined to extend their good run of form.

And Gardner says performances are the most important thing if they want to have a successful second half of the season.

"We need to keep our feet on the ground, keep plodding along, and see where it takes us," he said.

"We've got good fire-power, we're looking strong defensively, but that can all change in one game."

Barking have only lost once in their last nine league fixtures and Gardner says performances have been strong since September.

"It's just pleasing that we're putting in good performances week in and week out," he added.

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"The last time we played Tooting & Mitcham in the league was one of our best performances but we lost the game.

"As a manager you believe in your philosophies and ideas, so if players are doing as you ask them to do, win, lose or draw you will get more positive results than not.

"There are going to be times when you play out of your skin and lose games, so you can't grumble about that.

"It's about continuing and hoping your luck will turn around, and since September I can only think of the Chalfont St Peter game where we let ourselves down, as we were below par.

"Even the game we've lost I think we've been superb, we lost to Hanwell 5-0, but it was 1-0 until the 80th minute and we had 10 men for about 60 minutes.

"Performances are what is most pleasing and you always feel if you get good performances then you'll get more results. That's proven as we are getting more results than not."

Gardner knows Northwood, who appointed Jamie Leacock as their new manager just over a month ago, will pose another tough test, adding: "They've brought a new manager in recently and they're not doing too badly.

"Every league game is difficult, I've not come up against a team that isn't, even when the scoreline suggests we beat them comfortably we haven't.

"Hertford Town we beat 4-1 but in actual fact they had a lot of possession in the first half. I just want us to continue to perform."

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