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Hill expecting toughest test of season at Ebbsfleet
EASTLEIGH boss Richard Hill rates tonight’s trip to Ebbsfleet United as potentially the toughest test of the season so far for his Skrill Conference South leaders.
Although the Kent side are 12th, 11 points behind Hill’s men, they gave a flavour of their true potential on Saturday with a 6-0 away thrashing of Weston-super-Mare.
And it was the return from injury of centre-forward Ben May – a player long admired by Hill – which Ebbsfleet boss Steve Brown credited with making “a huge difference” to his side who, along with Eastleigh, kicked off the season as joint title favourites.
“Ebbsfleet are a good side with good players so, yes, on paper you’d say it’s our toughest test so far,” said Hill. “But, whatever the result, it’s not going to make or break our season.
“If there’s one surprise in this league it’s that Ebbsfleet are where they are, but their situation’s no different to ourselves and Sutton in that we’re all new teams who are all expected to play well immediately and win.
“Every year, because of the fall-out from the higher level, teams break up, new players come in and there’s no continuity. But the pressure’s immediately on the players to get to know each other and play well.
“In our team you see bits of play where Craig McAllister and Jai Reason link up well, but that’s because they’ve been playing together for 12 months.
“Ebbsfleet have had the same problems we have in that every wants to go there and win.”
Eastleigh – unbeaten in seven in the league – are again without injured pair Yemi Odubade and Dan Spence, while targetman McAllister is still troubled by a hamstring niggle.
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