Haynes keeping her feet on the ground

Victory in Sunday’s top of the table clash against second-placed Long Eaton United at Castlecroft would put Wolves in a commanding position as the half-way point of the National League Division 1 Midlands season approaches.

But thoughts of opening up what would be an eight-point gap at the top over our nearest rivals – who have a game in hand – are not entering the minds of any Wolves player ahead of the match, insists midfielder Billie Haynes.

Last season’s home game against the same opponents brought a 7-0 win, Haynes scoring twice. But it was a different story at Long Eaton, where Dan McNamara’s team secured a 1-0 victory in an extremely hard-fought encounter.

Haynes, whose cross set up striker Jade Cross for the only goal on that occasion, recalls: “Long Eaton dominated that game and it was a tough one for us. We got our goal on the break, and in the end it was a win we had to work really hard for.

“I think it will be the same this time around against a good team with good players. They’ve got technical ability but they’re also big and physical, so we’ve got to cope with the ugly side of the game as well as our footballing skills.

“It would be great to come out of the game with three points and open up a big lead at the top of the table, but we’re taking nothing for granted – promotion is our aim, but we know we’ve got a lot of challenges like this one ahead of us.”

Haynes is hoping to retain her place in the team after returning last Sunday with a goal in the 5-1 FA Cup fourth qualifying round victory over Sutton Coldfield Town, the result earning a place in the first round proper.

Monday’s first round draw saw Eastern Region Premier Division team Luton Town, 3-1 winners against Bowers & Pitsea in the last round, emerge as opponents for a tie that is to take place at Castlecroft on Sunday 10th November.

Haynes said: “It felt really good to be back in the team on Sunday and I was quite pleased with my performance, so hopefully I’ll be in again to play against Long Eaton and then against Luton next week.

“I see from Luton’s Twitter feed that they’re looking forward to playing us, and I’m sure we’ll feel the same way about facing them – especially if we can set ourselves up with a good result against Long Eaton.”