NORTHWICH Victoria manager Paul Moore says this afternoon' meeting with relegation-rivals Rugby Town is one his side dare not lose.
They start the contest bottom of the Northern Premier League’s Division One South, but will overtake their guests in the table if they can collect maximum points.
Last week, Moore said Vics may need to win nine of their remaining games to beat the drop.
“Our survival depends on winning matches like this one,” he said.
“It looks like we’re in a race of four teams, and our target is to beat each of them when we play each other.”
Loughborough Dynamo, conquerors of Vics earlier this month, are six points better off than Moore’s men.
However Northwich need to halt a run without a league victory that was extended to 10 fixtures following a narrow 2-1 defeat at in-form Kidsgrove Athletic on Saturday.
Drew Matthews, on as a substitute, halved their arrears with time running out after Harry Clayton’s double had established a lead for the home team.
However the visitors could not conjure an equaliser.
Moore, who handed a debut to full-backs Adam Lawrence and George Mannion at the weekend as well as midfielder John Bennett, believes Vics must sharpen up in attack.
He said: “We’re harder to break down, but I feel we lack a cutting edge up front.
“I’ll seek to improve in that area as soon as I can, and hopefully we’ll have somebody on board in time for Saturday.”
He hopes defender Reece Lyndon, who has been named as captain following Kieran Nolan’s departure to Runcorn Linnets, can shake off a hamstring injury to play.
Striker Stuart McDonald is struggling with a similar problem.
However Jack Turnbull, another recent recruit, hopes to make his debut after missing last weekend’s game due to work commitments.