King's Lynn boss calls for 'fan power' ahead of Notts County clash in the National League
King’s Lynn Town manager Tommy Widdrington has called on the club’s fans to put the past behind them and turn The Walks into a fortress.
Crowds have slumped this season with the Linnets struggling to find their form on home soil in the National League.
But former Football League giants Notts County visit Norfolk on Sunday and, following back-to-back victories in both league and cup, Lynn’s boss believes the club’s supporters have a crucial role to play.
Widdrington said: “Notts County in my opinion are the biggest club in the division and very well supported.
“I really hope the Lynn faithful will come out and go toe-to-toe with the opposition in terms of numbers because I don’t want them to out-number us on our own patch.
“We’re going to be wearing their colours on Sunday (black and white third strip) so that’ll get up their noses too but we want people to show that we are a proper football club.
“We’ve done well at home in the two games that I’ve been at the club so we want to continue that trend. We want the fans to be part of that and make this a tough place for teams to come.
“It’s through these times that you need the fans fully behind you. Anyone can be a fan when you’re winning the Southern League or the Conference North, but we need them right behind us more than ever now.”
Widdrington has completed his first signing since being installed as manager by bringing his son Theo to The Walks.
The former Portsmouth and Bristol Rovers player arrives on loan from Havant and Waterlooville until the end of January. Theo has also had loan spells at Bognor Regis (twice), Welling United and Hemel Hempstead. This season he has been on loan at Gosport Borough.
“Let me tell you this, I have done it in spite of him being my son, not because he is my son. He’s got to show what he does to prove me right.
“That is an insignificant thing for me. I think he has got qualities that we need in the team and he hasn’t got certain things that we already have in the team so he will be a good dovetail fit for what I see us playing like.
“He has got a bit of steel about him – he has got attributes that I don’t see in the group. Will he play 90 minutes every game? Not yet – bit like Josh Barrett.
The ability and thought process is there but he will need introducing and feeding into the group, but I am happy with what I have got and I think he is a good addition.”
And Lynn's boss hasn't ruled out bolstering his squad even further before the weekend.
“I have got a lad who has trained all week, at his own expense," he said.
"He has come down from the north-east and done very, very well. I am hopefully going to have a chat with him after training and encourage him to stay a little bit longer and possibly be a part of the game on Sunday.”
There is good and bad news on the injury front as Lynn's chief begins to welcome some bodies back.
Linnets midfielder Brett McGavin has tested positive for Covid and will miss the clash against the Magpies, but central defenders Kyle Callan-McFadden and Luis Fernandez both trained this week and are available for selection, as is Munashe Sundire.
Arthur Iontton remains sidelined after pulling up in training on Monday.
“It means it will be stronger behind me which means it will be stronger in front of me, which is all good,” admitted Widdrington, who is starting to get to know his squad better following his first full week with them on the training ground.
“I think the touch time, not just on the grass but when we are eating and when we are socialising together I am getting to know a few more characteristics, which is really important for me so there are things shaping in my mind that they don’t know about but I do so that when January comes I’ve got one or two things now that I think I will push on and try to do because I have made my mind up with one or two of the lads," he said.
“It’s been good – I haven’t tried to change the world, I have just tried to put some positive thinking and some competitive thoughts in their minds.
“They are very good when they have got the ball this lot, but they are not very good when they haven’t got the ball.”
Lynn’s next festive fixture is at Chesterfield on January 1 after the Grimsby Town clash on December 28 was postponed due to a number of positive tests in the Mariners camp.
“It’s a bit of a relief to be honest with out,” Widdrington admitted.
“I don’t think three games in six days is good for anybody at any level. The fact we are playing Sunday and now the following Saturday is probably welcome.”