Preparation key to Spartans’ win at Halesowen

Preparation was the key word for Blyth Spartans manager Tom Wade as he reflected on his side’s 2-1 win at Halesowen Town.

A goal in each half from Dan Maguire and Ryan Hutchinson was enough to seal three points after a long trip to the Midlands.

And Wade was delighted to have seen his side stand up to a direct approach from the home side.

He said: “It was tough, very tough in fact.

“We tried to prepare and do a bit of research and I spoke to people who had played them this season. We were told they were very direct so we prepared for that.

“It did take us may be a quarter of an hour to get to grips with them, but we stood up to it well and the likes of Nathan Buddle, Jordan Watson and Ryan Hutchinson all won big headers from their set pieces, but overall it was a team effort. It was a good win for us.”

Wade also expressed his delight at the debut of former Sunderland Under-21 defender Jordan Watson, who only signed for the club on Friday morning and had not even met his new team-mates prior to getting on the bus for the trip south.

“He did well, we thought he looked a little nervous to start with but he settled very quickly and did exactly what we wanted,” said Wade.

“He kept it simple and read the game very well.”

Wade also praised match-winner Hutchinson after his first goal for the club ensured Spartans sealed their first away win of the season at the third time of asking.

Wade said: “He did well in the midfield alongside Neal Hooks. He was strong and stood up to the challenge well.

“His goal was well worked and it was a lovely finish, and we think there is more to come from him.”

In closing Wade turned full circle and discussed preparation again, as he felt the win on Saturday provides his side with the perfect preparation for a Croft Park double header over the coming week.

“We needed that win because we have a very tough week coming up with FC United of Manchester and Buxton coming to Croft Park,” he said.

“It gives us a lift, it gives us a bit more confidence and it’s ideal preparation for two games against two clubs who will be there or thereabouts this season.”