Warren is ready for battle

Chris Lakey Keith Webb will recall one of his senior lieutenants this afternoon for what he promises will be a battle royale at The Walks.The Linnets face mid-table Tiverton hoping to maintain their lead at the top of the Southern League Premier Division.

Chris Lakey

Keith Webb will recall one of his senior lieutenants this afternoon for what he promises will be a battle royale at The Walks.

The Linnets face mid-table Tiverton hoping to maintain their lead at the top of the Southern League Premier Division.

And manager Webb says it's the perfect stage for central defender Mark Warren, who has been troubled by a hamstring injury, to lead his troops


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“He is our captain and he is an important part of the side,” said Webb. “He will come straight back into the team.

“We need our strongest players on the field and Mark Warren falls into that category.”

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Warren's return after a three-game absence means the axe for Charlie Defty, who did well alongside Greg Crane in the 2-0 home win over Rugby Town a week ago - and Webb admits the 24-year-old is an unlucky victim.

“He has done very well there to be fair to him,” said the Lynn boss. “Last Saturday he got better as the game went on and it's no reflection on him - it's just that Mark Warren is the right man for the job against Tiverton.”

Webb has a welcome injury-free squad to choose from - helped by the postponement of the midweek match at Hitchin - as the Linnets defend an eight-game unbeaten run at home. Their only defeat at The Walks this season was back in November when Corby left with all three points after a 1-0 win.

Since then, Lynn have edged their way to the top of the table on a home record of six wins and two draws. It's a formidable record, and one which produces an inevitable reaction from visiting teams.

“We are trying to make it a little bit of a fortress,” said Webb. “We have got a good home record because we have worked hard at it, we have worked teams and we continue to do that.

“A couple of teams have come here and made it difficult for us because you get a situation which all successful teams face - your opponents don't want to come to your place and get stuffed.

“Tiverton will be a tough team to handle, they are always a gritty team and it was a battle when we played down at their place.”

A goal by John Turner was enough to earn Lynn the points, but Tiverton's style stuck in the memory for Webb.

“It was one of those days,” he said. “We were on our travels and it was backs against the wall and our defence was superb. We had to grind it out - I suppose we did to them what I expect them to do to us tomorrow.”

Lynn's nearest challengers, Halesowen Town - two points behind from three games more - are at home to Merthyr, while third-placed Team Bath, a further two points in arrears, are without a game.

But Webb insists he is not concerned about his rivals' results.

“At the end of the day it is down to what we do,” he said. “If we keep winning it just makes it more difficult for the others to catch us. We just focus on ourselves.”

Lynn are repeating their Kids for a Quid offer this afternoon, when children aged 15 and under will be admitted for £1 when accompanied by a full paying adult. The last time they did it The Walks enjoyed its biggest crowd of the season - 1,230 for the game against Hemel Hempstead.

“It is important to us to play in front of big gates,” Webb added. “When they get behind the team it creates a terrific atmosphere.”

Chairman Ken Bobbins added: “When we ran the scheme for the Hemel game it gave us our biggest league gate of the season. It would be nice to think that on Saturday we could at least match that figure. I'm always pleased to see the youngsters in the ground because they are the next generation of King's Lynn supporters.”

Lynn squad: Howie, West, Chapman, Warren, C Defty, Crane, Camm, Fisk, Melton, Turner, Sedgemore, J Defty, Bloomfield, Nolan, Francis, Murray, Fleming.

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