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Macclesfield Town in the mire but Brian Horton is confident

Macclesfield Town are now playing catch-up in the race to avoid the drop. Although they had to be satisfied with a point on Friday night they were overtaken by Dagenham and Redbridge’s victory over Accrington Stanley the following day.

Macclesfield Town are now playing catch-up in the race to avoid the drop. Although they had to be satisfied with a point on Friday night they were overtaken by Dagenham and Redbridge’s victory over Accrington Stanley the following day.

Brian Horton’s men now have to make up ground on their rivals if they are to extend the club’s Football League stay.

But the temporary manager, who now has seven games before the end of the season, says that the formula is simple if the Silkmen are to survive – go out and win more games.

"It’s simple," said Horton, who took over from Gary Simpson 10 days ago. "The attitude and commitment has been very good right from the start but the bottom line is that we’ve got to be more clinical.

"They’re very nervous, they’re low on confidence and it is very frustrating, for them more than anyone else. We need to relax more in front of goal."

Macc’s perilous position, 23rd with only Hereford below them, means that single-point returns aren’t enough if Horton is to repeat his exploits from 2004, when he engineered an escape from an even more dire strait with points to spare.

And he says that adding goals and taking away mistakes at the back should equal victories.

"The performances haven’t been bad because we’ve played some decent stuff but mistakes have cost goals and that adds to the pressure on those up front," he said. "Scoring is a big concern for us. We got 37 crosses into the box on Friday, that’s outstanding and Matty Hamshaw can put in some great deliveries, but we’ve got to be in a more clinical frame of mind.

"We’ve done a lot of finishing in training this week, that’s the biggest problem, we’ve got to score more goals and win games, draws are no good at this stage."

With a trip to promotion hopefuls Gillingham to come this weekend few will be expecting Macc’s winless run to end at the Priestfield Stadium but the vastly experienced Horton won’t be overawed by their Kent hosts.

"I watched Gillingham on Saturday and they’re a decent, strong side with pace in them," he said. "They went with a 3-4-1-2 and it paid off for them. But there isn’t that much to choose between the teams at the top and bottom, anybody is capable of beating anybody else.

"If we can get more of a ruthless streak we can get out of trouble ourselves, we can’t rely on other teams to help us out, we’ll be giving it everything we’ve got to make sure we do it."

GEORGE Donnelly will miss the Gillingham game after his hamstring injury against Barnet. "He’s tweaked it but luckily we got him off straight away," added Horton.

Seven games to save the Silkmen:

  • Sat Mar 31 - Gillingham A
  • Fri Apr 6 - Shrewsbury H
  • Mon Apr 9 - Port Vale A
  • Sat Apr 14 - Crewe H
  • Sat Apr 21 - Bradford A
  • Sat Apr 28 - Burton H
  • Sat May 5 - Southend A
 

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