Holyhead Hotspur proving they are more than just McGinness


Dean Jones

DESPITE failing to hold on to a two-goal advantage at FC Queens Park, there is plenty to like about the start Holyhead Hotspur has made to the Huws Gray Alliance campaign.

The Holy Islanders have emerged as a genuine force at the business end of the table thanks to a series of eye-catching results in the early stages, which has seen them knock off nearby rivals Caernarfon Town and Porthmadog.

In previous seasons Campbell Harrison’s side have been heavily reliant on the talent of talisman Mel McGinness for any success that came their way, but thanks to a summer of impressive recruitment from the boss that burden has now been lifted off the gifted forward, at least to a degree.

There is no doubt that McGinness is still a significantly important figure for Spurs as his four league goals this season suggest, but on the rare days he is unable to influence a game then there are players ready and willing to pick up the slack.

None more so than John Littlemore, who has shown in a few short games in a Holyhead shirt that he is going to be a hugely valuable addition to the squad as the season progresses.

His work rate is truly outstanding and the striker’s ability to bring others into play is another massive bonus for the club, and he still possesses a wonderful touch and ability to create chances for himself out of nothing.

Squad mainstays Kenleigh Owen and Dean Garmey have also caught the eye this term, and together with goalkeeper Paul Pritchard they collectively have a great deal of experience and leadership qualities that are sure to stand them in good stead.

Full credit goes to Harrison for the squad and team spirit he has generated at a club who do not have the largest of budgets compared to some of the more fancied sides operating within the second tier.

Losing skipper Rhys Roberts to the Canaries left a huge void on-and-off the pitch, but this has only seemed to generate more focus from those that remained, which has made a smooth transition over to the new arrivals.

Their credentials are going to be severely tested over the next few weeks as the games comes thick and fast, with their light schedule to begin the season set to be a distant memory by the end of October.

After games against Gresford Athletic and Penrhyncoch in the next fortnight, Spurs then Guilsfield, Denbigh Town, Flint Town United, Rhyl and current leaders Airbus Broughton, with each side holding ambitions of lifting the title next spring.

How Harrison’s men cope with the demands of these difficult fixtures will be a real insight as to what they can expect to achieve for the remainder of the campaign, but if early signs are anything to go by then there is plenty of encouragement for the demands ahead, and the more familiar each squad member becomes with one another then the stronger they will become.



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