Jon Kennedy says this week has been the calm before the storm for his Worksop Town players.
The player-manager gave the squad a break from training ahead of Saturday’s visit of Staveley, a match that presents a chance to gain a measure of revenge.
Tigers were hammered by the Miners Welfare side back in January and after leading his side to a 2-1 win at Armthorpe last weekend, Kennedy was able to rest his men.
“It’s been pretty calm this week with no midweek game,” he said.
“We’ve not trained this week. With carrying such a small squad a lot of the lads have niggles and a few have injuries.
“We told them to look after themselves this week.
“We need a performance on Saturday, it’s a big game for us after they beat us 6-1 at their place.”
Kennedy expects another tough encounter with their near neighbours at Sandy Lane on Saturday.
Staveley sit two positions and two points ahead of 10th-placed Worksop going into the weekend.
“When they played us they were very good, a fast, attacking side,” he said.
“They’re one of the better footballing sides in the division.”
Worksop go into the derby on the back of a three-point haul after snapping a three-game losing streak at Armthorpe.
Goalkeeper Kennedy was relieved to get that victory, thanks to a 90th minute Kyle Jordan penalty, having spurned earlier chances.
“It was more relif, we were 1-0 down at half-time and we could have been 3-0 up before they’d been in our half,” he said.
“The other three games, against Cleethorpes, AFC Mansfield and Parramore, we probably wouldn’t have expected to pick up many points against them – but two of the games were very close.
“It was good to end that run though.”
Back to winning ways, the task for Kennedy and assistant Craig Denton is to mastermind a few more victories before the end of the season.
Kennedy believes the powers that be at Worksop have been pleased and some onlookers pleasantly surprised by their progress since December.
“They’ve been happy, we’ve massively cut the budget and picked up a lot more wins and had better performances than people might have thought,” he said of the decision makers.
“We have to pick up as many points as possible, but keep the lads improving.
“No one knows for definite what’s happening and a lot of lads want to try and establish themselves.
“We’re getting the younger lads more confident.”
Tigers will be hoping for a big crowd to come through the Sandy Lane gates this weekend.
Attendances have dipped in the second half of the season but Kennedy isn’t surprised or alarmed.
“They have (dipped) but I would have expected that once we realised we couldn’t win the league,” he said.
“Some people lose interest, it’s natural.
“As long as we keep above the 300 to 350 mark it’s still a decent crowd that keeps the club going.”