Mets head for the Den

Thursday, 9th February 2012

Trafford Metros take to the road this weekend with a fixture against the Nottingham Lions at the National Ice Arena on Sunday evening. Lions have struggled to make an impact on the league this season but they'll have been buoyed by their solid 4 - 0 win over fellow basement boys Coventry Blaze last week. Meanwhile, Mets will be relying on their ever-strengthening team spirit to stand them in good stead as a series of injury worries threatens to halt their progress.

Jake Nurse has been ruled out of Sunday's game with ligament damage sustained in last week's match against Whitley Warriors. John Murray and Scott Robson are doubtful starters, and there's also a question mark over Dan Etherington's availability after what might have been an over-ambitiously early return from injury in last Sunday's game. Netminder Paul Maudsley has now finished his stint with the Mets for the season and is off travelling the globe for several months. We look forward to his return for the next campaign.

So, with up to five of the squad sidelined, Metros will be thankful for the arrival of newly signed Jason Pirie and netminder Dave Clancy. Both players were involved in the Altrincham junior system with Dave going on to ice with Manchester Phoenix, among others. He makes his latest move to Trafford from Blackburn, and both players will be warmly welcomed by the squad.

As we enter the final phase of the season every weekend throws up some interesting statistical possibilities. Looking down the league, Mets now need a paltry three points from their remaining eight games to guarantee A league hockey next season. However, that status could be confirmed as early as this weekend if Solihull drop any points against Billingham and Mets beat Nottingham. Looking upwards Mets are in a real scrap for a playoff place with Blackburn and Telford. Arguably, Mets have the most difficult run-in, so every point will be precious if we are to overhaul either the Titans or the Hawks. The first of those points are on offer this Sunday, and the squad will be determined to take them both.