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Central defence pairing earns management praise

2 weeks ago By David Laughlin

Grant Black believes a major factor in Belper's resurgence is the centre back partnership of Alex Peterson and Danny South, writes Danny Bloomer.

“They’re both good old fashioned defenders as we call them, where they’ll go and win everything and put their heads where people put their feet and that sets the tone for the rest of the team” Grant Black

The pair have started together in each of the Nailers’ previous four matches, including Saturday’s 3-1 victory over Carlton Town, which extended their winning run to four in all competitions.

Speaking after Saturday’s success, he said: “They’ve [Peterson and South (pictured)] built up a great relationship which is sort of what we needed, a bit of consistency in that position…but they’re both good old fashioned defenders as we call them, where they’ll go and win everything and put their heads where people put their feet and that sets the tone for the rest of the team,” the Belper boss added, “they both deserve masses of credit for the run we’ve been on recently.”

Goals from George Milner, Nathan Curtis and Piteu Crouz ensured the visitors returned to Derbyshire with all three points. Belper created numerous opportunities throughout the game and Black was pleased with the persistence his side showed to get the win.

“We always knew it was going to be a tough place to go, obviously it’s not a great pitch, not a great surrounding so it was more of a mental battle than anything else for the lads yesterday, but I thought they stuck to the task really well and did the job as we expected.”

The Nailers’ strong squad depth was once again highlighted on Saturday, with both Kai Hancock and Isaac Assenso ruled out through suspension.

Nathan Curtis and Cameron Hough replaced the absent pair and Black was pleased with their performances.

He said: “We spoke last week regarding Kai and Isaac being suspended and obviously said they would be a big loss to any team, but we said that it would be an opportunity for two people to come in and I thought both lads did themselves credit. I thought they both put in good performances.”

This has left Black with a huge selection headache ahead of the Derbyshire Senior Cup tie with Matlock Town on Tuesday, but one which he is pleased to be in the position to make. “That makes it a tricky decision for us going into Tuesday night but it’s the kind of decisions we want to be making.”

As mentioned, the Nailers next match is a trip to near neighbours Matlock, where Black thinks it will be a good opportunity for his players to compete against a team in a higher division. “It’s a game for some of our lads to test themselves against a team at a higher level and to see where they’re at in their development.”

He also added that his side are keen to keep building momentum but knows how difficult a challenge the Gladiators will pose. “Matlock are on a great run since their change of manager so we’re under no illusions it’s going to be a really tough game. We’ll go there and give it our best shot and hopefully that’ll be enough to win the game,” the Belper boss said, “when you’re on an unbeaten run you want games to keep coming thick and fast and keep that momentum.”

Updated 20:11 - 2 Dec 2018 by David Laughlin

Where next?

Nathan steps up to the plate again Despite the result looking tight, Belper’s 2-1 victory over Loughborough Dynamo was anything but, writes Jack Drury.
Milner commits to the Nailers Nailers striker George Milner has committed his future to the club by signing a contract to the end of the 2019/20 season

Wed 26 Dec
First Team Sheffield FC
League 15:00
Tue 1 Jan
First Team Gresley FC
League 15:00
Sat 5 Jan
First Team Brighouse Town
League 15:00

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