Published: 00:00, 04 February 2018 |
Updated: 09:16, 05 February 2018
Margate boss Steve Watt admitted his side had to delve deep into their energy reserves to secure Saturday's narrow Bostik Premier victory over Lowestoft at Hartsdown Park.
A second-half header from league top scorer Jordan Chiedozie - his 30th goal of the campaign - proved the difference as the buoyant Blues made it five wins in a row, and nine unbeaten.
Watt felt his side lacked their usual spark in the first half but that by the end they were worthy winners. The victory kept them third, just three points behind the top two, Billericay and Dulwich Hamlet.
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Watt said: "I think it maybe should have been a lot more comfortable than it was given the chances we created but 1-0, 3-0 it's another three points.
"I said to the guys at half-time we looked like a team that had just had a really, really busy month.
"I felt we lacked that little bit of spark that we normally have, that little bit of energy and it was very much the talk at half-time to try and find it from somewhere.
"We said that if we could find a little bit of tempo, inject a little bit of pace and energy into the game we could make it very comfortable.
"We did do that and there was a period when we should have gone two or three up, and closed the game out, but the most important thing was three points.
"You look at the other results in our division today and everyone in around us has won so it makes that three points even more sweeter."
Margate played nine games during January - winning six and drawing two - and Watt said he had feared that gruelling schedule would catch up with his players.
He added: "I always knew today was going to be difficult off the back of what we had done last month and because of the forced changes we had to deal with (Jack Evans and Ben Swift were both ruled out by injury).
"Lowestoft came for a point, but the boys showed great desire and resolve, we just had to make sure when a chance we took it and luckily it fell to the person in form, the person you'd expect to take it and he did."
Swift was ruled out by a hamstring problem which looks likely to keep him out for several weeks. His replacement was George Essuman, who has been signed on a month's loan from National League Dover.
The 21-year-old was only introduced to his team-mates on matchday but gave an assured performance alongside central defensive partner Liam Friend.
Watt said: "He trained with Dover on Thursday because we couldn't get the paperwork signed and Dover didn't want him to train with us until it had been.
"He met the boys for the first time today which I think makes his performance even better.
"I had a quick chat with him before the game, it was the first time I'd met him, although we'd spoken on the phone and I thought he was outstanding.
"'Friendy' guided him through, he had Tom Wynter on his shoulder as well so he was between good experienced players and I thought as the game went on he got better and better. He'll be a great asset to us."
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