Dom Di Paola insisted that we must ensure that we keep ‘trying to improve and not stand still’ as we welcome Corinthian-Casuals to The Camping World Community Stadium this Saturday.
It’s been over three months since Jack Brivio and Kieran Lavery inspired a dramatic late turnaround when two goals in the last three minutes helped us come from behind to secure three points in Tolworth.
In a match which Di Paola admits we were ‘fortunate’ to win, Casuals were still searching for their first win and were stuck at the bottom of the table.
Despite having a tough campaign so far, there have been some promising signs in recent weeks.
Wins over Cheshunt and Leatherhead, while also holding Hornchurch to a draw back in November, implies they’re more stubborn opponents than their third from bottom placing would suggest.
Their struggles have surprised many, including one of our very own. The boss said: “We were rather fortunate to come away with the points when we played up at their place earlier in the season so no doubt they will be out to avenge that defeat.
“I don’t know the circumstances behind their poor start and it is certainly a surprise to see them struggling but we know they will be capable of giving us problems if we aren’t totally focused.”
Known as the highest ranked fully amateur team in English Senior football, the Casuals have also got a little Brazilian flair in them, having helped inspire the creation of two-time Club World Cup Champions SC Corinthians Paulista.
Their more famous Brazilian counterparts owe large amounts of their success to the non-league side, after a tour of the country back in 1910 inspired locals to form their own team in Corinthian’s honour.
As for the Hornets, Di Paola’s side will be looking to get back to winning ways after suffering defeats to Hornchurch and Worthing in the past seven days.
Although still currently third in the table, Di Paola is keen for us not to take the position for granted.
He said: “We have to think about where we’ve come from and in such a quick time.
“We effectively came from nowhere but are competing with really established sides at this level now, which is a real plus for us.
“It’s probably been my most enjoyable season. With no disrespect to others, I love pitting my wits against proper managers and playing big teams.
“But we know how quickly things can change in football so we have to ensure that we keep trying to improve and not stand still.
“We’re in a good position right now because we’ve been consistent but if you lose you focus then other teams can go on a run and you suddenly find yourself dropping away.”
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To those unable to make it down to The Camping World Community Stadium, you can follow the action on our frequently-updated Twitter feed (@HorshamFC) with coverage starting just before kick off at 3pm.