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Witton Albion manager Brian Pritchard tips Steve Foster to make an impact on his return
STEVE Foster, rated the best player in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League’s top tier last season, will make Witton’s attack one of its most formidable.
That’s the view of Albion boss Brian Pritchard after the 30-year-old agreed a return to Northwich, initially for a month-long loan, for a second spell.
“Steve adds to the quality we already have,” he said.
“He is not here to replace anybody but to assist the forwards that we do have, which is something I think they need.
“That means we have three forwards now that most teams would love to have in their squad.”
Foster was transfer-listed by Chorley last month, a team for which he scored 24 goals in his way to winning the Premier Division Golden Boot award last season.
He played in the same team as Pritchard after Witton were relegated three years ago.
“I’m happy he’s back,” said the Albion manager.
“I think he’s a fine player who I have a huge amount of respect for, both as a teammate and also when I played against him.
“He left Witton because back then we were going nowhere.”
Foster was on target 21 times in 32 starts during before leaving Wincham Park for Salford in March 2010, where he added a further 40 goals to attract Chorley’s attention a year later.
He is in the squad for tomorrow’s trip to second-placed North Ferriby United, the start of a five-weeks stay after which Witton will have the option to make permanent his switch.
Pritchard said: “Nobody is guaranteed a place; I expect each of our forwards to give their all when they play a part over the coming weeks.
“There is room for each of them, and Steve sees this as an opportunity to put himself in the shop window both for Witton and any other club that may wish to sign him.
“A lot of hard work has gone into getting the deal done, both at our end and at Chorley, to it’s a relief to have everything finally in place.”
He has challenged his side, victors at promotion hopefuls AFC Fylde in midweek, to repeat the trick against opponents who have amassed more points than anybody else in the Premier Division over the past six matches.
Only last year’s champions, Chester, have beaten North Ferriby on their own pitch since February.
“Can the players perform like that again?” asked Pritchard.
“That’s the test, to carry one performance into the next game, which is something we’ve struggled to do this season.
“The lads proved on Tuesday night that they are capable of being disciplined defensively from the first minute of a match.
“There’s massive competition for places now, which should help to keep up those standards.”
Witton arrive in Hull just three points adrift of pacesetters Marine, who visit Northwich next Tuesday.
Full back Anthony Gardner returns after injury to feature tomorrow, but midfield pair Steven Connors and Joe Shaw will continue to convalesce after injury.
To read a preview of tomorrow's encounter, click here: http://bit.ly/RlMpA3