HARROGATE Railway are hoping for a happier 2012, after a poor start to the campaign has dumped them into the lower reaches of the Evo Stik First Division North.
Nigel Danby’s troops suffered a 1-0 defeat at home to Durham City on Boxing Day, and now face a trip to Clitheroe on Monday, January 2.
Railway’s defensive struggles have cost them dear this season, so much so that assistant coach Mick Norbury is considering pulling his boots back on.
The ex-Halifax Town legend broke his ankle over a year ago, but is finally on the road to recovery.
And his side’s frailties at the back are convincing the one-time prolific goalscorer it might be time for a return to the pitch.
“My ankle is getting better so it might be time for a comeback,” said Norbury.
“I’m 42 and Nige is 36, although I look younger than him, so perhaps we might do it.
“I could chip in with the odd goal, and if I hadn’t broken my ankle I’d certainly want to get out there.
“Walking is fine but I’m still having problems running, although hopefully soon I’ll get on and hobble about.
“I could stay in the box and wait for a cross in. I could end up leading scorer.”
On Boxing Day, Rail’ suffered a poor 1-0 loss at home to Durham City.
David Dowson’s 22nd minute strike proved the difference on the day.
It hasn’t been a classic Railway season so far by any means.
Disappointing defeats to relegation fodder such as Ossett Albion and an early FA Cup exit were followed by a superb 5-1 win over Wakefield and then a frustrating draw with lowly Prescot Cables.
But Norbury believes there’s plenty to stay positive about.
“The lads are going through a very dodgy spell,” he said.
“The way we’ve played has been very frustrating.
“On paper you’d look and say we should be happy with four points from six but not when we’re playing a side like Prescot Cables.
“We’d expected to spank them and it didn’t happen. Right now I think we’ve got to set our stall out for keeping a clean sheet, even if that means going for a nil-nil.
“I’m always confident that we’ll score goals, but losing our shape so badly in defence is really costing us.”
lKNARESBOROUGH TOWN are in West Yorkshire League action on New Year’s Eve when the leaders welcome Carlton Athletic (2pm ko).