JERSEY BULLS are without star striker and top scorer Lorne Bickley for Saturday’s league match at home to Horley.
Bickley is away, which means Jake Prince is likely to come in and lead the line.
That may mean a change to the dynamics of Bulls’ attack, although, with Miguel Carvalho also returning from suspension, that could be to the Islanders’ advantage.
Manager Gary Freeman expects another visiting team to be content with sitting back and soaking up the pressure. Despite finding themselves three-quarters of the way down the table, Horley have only lost by the odd goal in half of their ten defeats this season.
‘They are a funny team,’ said Freeman. ‘They tend to stay in games. Horley will sit back and be a bit more dogged. We are definitely preparing for a battle.
Bulls have, at times, struggled to break down teams who have come to defend, so far dropping more points at home than they have on the road.
‘We may need to see the attackers rotate a little bit more. We just need to try and move the ball more quickly,’ admitted Freeman.
‘We’ve got to pull them around and then Miguel can give us that bit of magic to open things up.’
Freeman knows these are the games that Bulls cannot afford to drop points in as they push for promotion places. They currently sit in eighth position but have four games in hand on leaders Raynes Park Vale, who are 14 points ahead. Meanwhile, Badshot Lea, the league’s other main contenders, were held to a 1-1 draw last weekend at home to Knaphill, who themselves have pulled themselves into contention.
Badshot host Raynes Park, meaning points will be dropped somewhere to Bulls advantage.
‘It’s a difficult league to get out of and there will be a lot more points dropped along. There’s a long way to go and I expect it to go right down to the wire,’ added Freeman.
‘We have no divine right to win this league. It’s going to be tough. You imagine the amount of travel these boys do for every away game. An hour on the plane and then a coach for one-and-a-half hours. It takes real commitment.
‘But the players are committed and I cannot praise them enough.’