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Bognor nine points adrift but boss vows to keep on fighting

Bognor boss Jack Pearce says his side will keep on fighting despite losing ground in the battle for survival.


It was a big week for everyone at Nyewood Lane as the Rocks were pitched with two winnable matches in four days.


But a 1-0 defeat on the road at fourth-bottom Chippenham Town followed by a postponement on Tuesday night against Welling means that Bognor have lost ground in the fight for survival.


The gap between the second bottom Rocks and safety is now nine points, the most it has been all season.


With only one win in 12 in all competitions, tomorrow’s match with Braintree Town at Nyewood Lane (3pm) is crucial – and Rocks boss Pearce says his side will keep up the optimism as they seek their first league win at home since August.


He said: “I would find it easier to take if we were being dominated, but we are five to ten per cent short. We just have to keep trying and working hard and the results will come.


“Everyone will have an opinion at what’s wrong, they are all entitled to do that. But I cannot ask the players for any more.


“Some people will think it is the manager’s fault and that may be so; but I will tell anyone that, whoever we have in charge, they will not be able to attract the players that we need. Two seasons ago there was a team just up the road from us (Havant & Waterlooville) with two and a half times our wage budget. They got relegated, that’s how difficult the league is.”


Bognor’s poor run was extended last weekend when they were beaten 1-0 at relegation rivals Chippenham. The Rocks thought they had taken an early lead but Doug Tuck’s strike was ruled out for an earlier foul.


Ben Swallow and Ibra Sekajja also had chances. But Bognor’s task was made all the harder when Calvin Davies was dismissed just five minutes before half time.


The Bluebirds took the lead after the break – and, try as they might, Bognor were unable to find the equaliser.


Davies’ dismissal means he misses the next four matches. Corey Heath is also still out, as is James Crane, who went in to have his operation on his shoulder this week, which was part-funded by the Rocks Supporters Club. But Sami El-Abd and Ollie Pearce are in contention to start after both were on the bench last time out.


Braintree come to the Nye Camp with their own troubles. The ninth-placed Irons have not won in five matches in the league, a run that has seen them slip out of the play-off places.


But looking at all competitions, they have won just once in 11 matches – something that is close to matching even the Rocks at the top of the poor form table.

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