Maidstone United’s survival hopes got another massive boost as the Stones impressively recorded another three points away from home on Saturday despite a five-hour journey to Gateshead.
The game was a story of two frantic goals in a quiet affair between these two National League sides. The Stones went in one-nil down at half time when Tom Mills swung at the ball and it clipped Gateshead forward Jordan Burrows.
Despite our previous results and coming back from a goal down in other games I was not confident at half time.
With Jamar Loza out due to a groin injury, Yemi Odubade lacking in match practice and the rest of the front line not firing on all cylinders in the first half I could not see a way for us to get back into this game.
Midway through the second half Jay Saunders brought on Bobby Joe Taylor for Jack Paxman and an own goal equaliser changed the game.
On the seventy-sixth minute Bobby Joe Taylor rifled home the winning goal after latching onto a pass from Reece Prestedge.
Maidstone United are now unbeaten for an impressive nine games.
Whilst we all know survival is our top priority to go unbeaten for the remainder of the season would be a momentous achievement and the two go hand in hand.
I am in no doubt that we will need Jamar Loza back for the final few games but I do feel we do have enough strength within the squad to keep the run going until the end of the season.
Jay Saunders is going to have to be very clever with how he utilises his subs during the matches that follow to ensure players get the maximum amount of game time possible without impairing the overall result.
Yemi and George Oakley are different from Jamar and the team will need to adapt to support their game.
Yemi is not as skilful as Jamar but has plenty of pace, power and finishing ability. Oakley is still finding his feet but had an improved ten minutes at the weekend.
Tuesday night could see Jay resort to a 4-4-2 formation with Bobby Joe Taylor starting the game. Taylor has an impressive scoring record this season.
Whoever starts for the Stones in place of Jamar will need to take this opportunity with open arms.
The longer we remain unbeaten the safer we are in the National League. #Believe
Stones fan blog match prediction: Macclesfield 1 – 3 Maidstone United