Harrogate Town boss Simon Weaver is backing his players to maintain their fine run of form in 2017, despite an injury crisis that he admits is pushing the club to its limits.
Lloyd Kerry became the fourth member of the squad to be crocked in Town’s last three outings when he was stretchered off during Saturday’s National League North victory over Chorley.
And the midfielder joins Louie Swain, Andi Thanoj and Luke Shiels on the CNG Stadium’s already overcrowded treatment table, leaving Weaver down to the bare bones ahead of this weekend’s trip to high-flying Kidderminster.
“It’s been incredibly tough trying to deal with the amount of injuries we’ve suffered, particularly as they have all been to key players,” he said.
“We won’t be far away from breaking point if we lose anyone else, and it’s going to be hard to sustain the excellent run that we’ve been on since the turn of the year with so many lads missing, but we’ve got great team spirit and we’ll travel to Kidderminster and have a real go.
“The lads have shown great character and real grit recently and we will have to continue to do so if we are going to get a result on Saturday.
“We’ve upset the odds on plenty of occasions before, however, and there is a real belief in the camp despite all the setbacks we’ve suffered, and we go to Kidderminster in confident mood.”
Although Town have suffered a staggering number of injuries during their first season playing on their new 3G pitch, Weaver does believe that the surface at the CNG Stadium is to blame for the situation.
“Personally, I think it is just a coincidence,” he added.
“I’m certainly not losing any sleep over the pitch because it’s not as if our lads are just getting hurt when we play at home.
“We train on the 3G every week, and we train at high intesnity a lot of the time, and I’m not seeing lads pulling up during the sessions.
“We lost Andi Thanoj and Luke Shiels on an absolute sandpit at Gloucester City, and they play at a Football League ground. It’s difficult to put your finger on exactly what the issue is.”
Having been left with a significantly reduced pool of players to pick from ahead of this weekend’s trip to Aggborough, Weaver has admitted that he is looking to bring in re-inforcements, but conceded that it is a difficult time of year to do so.
“I’m looking at trying to add players because we have to, but it’s not easy at this time of the year,” he said.
“You only really want to bring in lads who are as good as or better than what you have already got and there aren’t many clubs willing to let players that fall into those categories go.”
Town head into Saturday’s fixture in 10th position, seven points shy of the play-offs, while Kidderminster currently sit second in the table.
When the sides met at the CNG in October, the Harriers triumphed by a 2-0 scoreline.