Clitheroe manager Lee Ashforth looking to hit the 30-point mark

Clitheroe FC manager Lee Ashforth
Clitheroe FC manager Lee Ashforth
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Lee Ashforth is confident that 10 points from the remaining 13 fixtures in the Evo-Stik League West Division will be enough to see Clitheroe to safety.

The Blues are without a win in 11, collecting only a couple of points from the 33 available to them, but remain seven points clear of the drop zone.

Ashworth’s target would take them to the 30-point mark and the Shawbridge boss would be more than satisfied with that return.

He said: “I stand by it. We’re seven points clear of that bottom two. We’ve still got games that are winnable coming up so it’s not like we’ve got all the top teams to play.

“The good thing is that we’re not getting smashed by teams. We’re losing by the odd goal here and there, we’re scoring and that will always give us a chance.

“We just need that little bit of luck. We’ll get it eventually, hopefully it will be next week. We’ve 13 games left and we need 10 points to be safe.

“We’d be unlucky to go down with 30 points. We’ve got to kick on and go again but teams below us are looking up and that’s a good position to be in.

“It’s not like we’re trying to catch teams, they’re trying to catch us. That pressure is on them at the minute but if they get a couple of wins then that pressure will come against us.

“At the minute we’re clear of that and we can keep building what we’ve got, keep teaching the lads and they’ll learn from experience.”

The Blues have been dropping points left, right and centre having conceded late on but Ashforth feels that he’s identified the problem.

They were beaten by two late goals against Newcastle Town, missed out on three points away at Kendal Town when conceding a late equaliser, were beaten late on against Market Drayton Town and were hit with a suckerpunch in their latest outing against Widnes.

“We’re trying to get players fit; Antoine [Recizak] has just come back from a month in Kenya,” said Ashforth, following the latest loss against The Whites.

“He came across to the bench and said that he’d done his time. We had to take him off, Harry Pratt has been playing at a lower level so he needs to get fit to play at this level, Josh Gregory’s been out for six months and he was supposed to play 60 minutes but we had to get him through 90.

“That’s why we’re conceding late at the minute, our fitness is telling. I spoke to the lads this week and they know that they need to be doing stuff away from here. On a heavy pitch like that the fitness told at the end.

“You look at the players, one to 11, I think they’ll all be disappointed with the first half performance.

“The way they came out in the second half, let’s be honest, we deserved to win the game.

“I spoke to Kev Towey and Steve Akrigg after the game and they said exactly the same. How we haven’t won that game is beyond us. It’s embarrassing that we haven’t got anything out of it.

“We just want to finish the season well. We haven’t won in 11 games but we feel like we’re there or there-abouts.”