Even manager Keith Briggs admits he’s never entirely sure which team will take the field. But he’s 100 per cent certain that he’ll have to sort out the personality disorder if he’s to keep his job at Bower Fold.
“After the Christmas period when we won four games I thought we’d kick on and that confidence forward, but it didn’t happen. We had a tough game against Tamworth, who were flying at the time, and it took us back a few stages,” Briggs commented.
“We battered Stockport but were naïve and got hit with a very late sucker punch. Against Chorley we defended well in the first half, then battered them after the break but couldn’t score.
“And then we got the Brackley game which was a total write-off. It was the worst I’ve ever known us play as a manager or as a player.”
After a week off because North Ferriby were in FA Trophy action, Stalybridge return with a match at Lowestoft on Saturday. It’s a game they must win if they are not to get cut adrift in the relegation places.
Briggs admits that the directors have done all they can to make sure his squad will be in the best shape. Whereas when Hyde went to Suffolk, a month ago, they took a journey which started at 7.15am and ended at 12.30 the following morning, the Celtic players will get an overnight stay.
Said the manager: “We’ve got players at this football club who are good enough to get us out of this mess but they’ve got to stand up and be counted. They’ve got to work harder and start performing.
“They’ll be fully rested at Lowestoft so there’ll be no excuses. It’s up to them to respond.
“But I’m fully aware of my part in all this. I’ve put a lot of pressure on myself to do well and if we don’t start winning games soon things will have to change. I don’t want that to include me.
“I want to be at Stalybridge Celtic a long time and that’s only going to happen if we get the right results.”
Asked about Liam Dickinson’s transfer to Guiseley, Briggs replied: “I felt that when Liam was in the side we were too direct. We were going long all the time instead of playing football.
“I’ve always told the players if somebody comes in for them I’ll let them know. Guiseley are in the play-off places and I wish Liam well.”
And the manager quipped: “I hope he scores lots of goals against the teams around us and has a stinker when Guiseley play Stalybridge.”