SOUTHERN LEAGUE: Collier backs Macklin to impress

This Is Wiltshire: Chippenham manager Mark Collier Chippenham manager Mark Collier

BOSS Mark Collier hopes he has signed a hungry Lloyd Macklin after adding the former Swindon Town forward to his expanding Chippenham squad this week.

Collier completed the signing of the 22-year-old former Torquay man from Conference South Farnborough, before selecting him for the full 90 minutes of Tuesday’s 3-1 defeat to Totton.

The Chippenham boss has also moved to snap up 30-year-old midfielder Bryan Smith following his release from Frome.

It completes a busy period of business for the Bluebirds, who signed Alex Ferguson on a month’s loan from Swindon Town last week.

“Lloyd Macklin’s come in but he looks like he hasn’t played and he’s off the pace a little bit so he’ll have to do a bit of work on that front,” said Collier.

“He’s an ex-pro and 22 years old so he should be chomping at the bit to get moving back up the ladder.

“I know Bryan from his Swindon Town days. He’s a big, strong lad who’ll give us a bit of presence.

“The fact that we’re still bringing people into this football club is something for the lads to think about but we won’t get anyone in who’s not better than what we’ve got.”

Chippenham take on Southern League Premier Division leaders Hemel Hempstead tomorrow looking to put an end to their run of four league games without a win.

As their league position suggests, Hemel are in fine form and have only lost two of their opening 19 games.

A measure of the challenge Collier’s men is illustrated by the result of Hemel’s fixture against Totton at the end of November, which the Tudors won 8-1.

Lower down the ladder in Division One South & West, Cirencester will be hoping that they continue their fine form with victory at home to Yate.

The Centurions are three points clear of Merthyr at the top of the standings and have only lost three league games since the start of the campaign.

Yate currently occupy a midtable slot but are in reasonable shape having not suffered defeat in three league fixtures.

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