Shaymen are closing in on the leaders

Town cut Hyde FC’s advantage at the top of the Blue Square Bet North table to single figures as they made the most of their rivals’ inactivity with a 1-0 win at Colwyn Bay.

Neil Aspin’s side are now nine points behind the leaders with a couple of games in hand thanks to Danny Holland’s 42nd-minute header.

And the manager revealed he had stressed the importance of victory to his players in the countdown to kick off.

“I said to the players before the game that if we were going to try to apply any pressure on anyone we had to win on Saturday,” he said.

“Even a draw was no good for us - we had to go there and win.

“That will just get other teams thinking about us.

“We want to win games - that’s why I manage and the players play.

“We will always set out to win games.”

It was a strange game in which both sides carved out early chances and the Shaymen then took a grip with Liam Hogan being switched to right back to help them cope with the threat of Shelton Payne on the left.

“Defensively we were too open in the first 15 minutes when there were chances at both ends,” said Aspin.

“In the second half they had one chance but other than that I thought we made all the chances and played in their half.

“I don’t like swapping Liam Hogan to right back but it was a sensible move because we needed to nullify the threat of Colwyn Bay’s pace in wide areas.”

Town lost Tom Baker before kick off to a sore Achilles but midfield trio Liam Needham, Simon Garner and Ryan Toulson continued to impress in his absence.

“It is a blow but we have been without him for a few weeks and managed to cover for him,” said Aspin.

“There is going to come a time when he is fit and we do need him. At the moment the players there are doing a good job.

“I am always nit picking because I want them to do better. They did some things right, but I still want more.

“If you look at the three of them you can’t fault their effort, application and desire.”

Jamie Rainford was forced to settle for a cameo appearance in the final quarter on his return to the club.

But Aspin was pleased with what he saw from a player who agreed a permanent deal to join the Shaymen in midweek

“He showed enough in the time he was on the pitch to tell us what a player he is going to be,” said the manager.

“When he went through the first time he did everything right and the keeper’s made a great save.

“He could have had four in 20 minutes and even though you would expect him to score I was in no way disappointed.

“There will be a game when we need him to score; on Saturday we got the win without his goals.”

Cameron Darkwah also came off the bench in the final game of his month’s loan and Aspin appears keen to extend his stay from Stockport County into a second month.

“It is important forward-wise to have players,” he said. “Especially when we start playing Tuesday and Saturday.

“If we can have another forward on board we should try to keep him.

“I feel sorry for the lad because he has done nothing wrong and he is suffering from being young and inexperienced. Of course you only get experience by playing.”

Bookings are being taken for the official supporters’ coach to Eastwood next weekend which will leave the Shay at 11.30. The cost will be £12 and places can be booked by calling the travel line number on 07707 143094.

The same number can be used to book a place on the shuttle bus for the Sportsman’s Dinner at the Cedar Court Hotel on Friday.