Horsham have some festive cheer and a feared injury set-back going into the Christmas period.
A positive will see the Hornets let forward Tiago Andrade stake a claim for a starting slot over a busy spell.
Since joining from Broadbridge Heath last month, the striker has found starts limited, despite frontman Terry Dodd being out injured.
But with Andrade building fitness and the Hornets’ search for a new forward so far being unsuccessful, he is set to get his chance as he is firmly in the side’s plans.
Further good news is that long-term absentee Adam Hunt is set for an imminent loan spell to aid his comeback.
But there appears to be no goodwill going in Mark Knee’s direction who is feared to have suffered an injury set-back.
He was also primed for a loan spell, but felt a twinge in his knee during a pre-match session ahead of Horsham’s Sussex Senior Cup exit at Bognor on Tuesday night.
Horsham host Godalming on Boxing Day (2pm), travel to Molesey on New Year’s Eve (1pm) and face Lewes away on Bank Holiday Monday (January 2, 3pm).
Their target over the period remain the same with Hornets boss Dominic Di Paola saying: “We just have to get as many points on the board as quickly as possible, that’s the main ambition of the season.
“It’s a bit negative really, but the main concern is keeping the club in this league.
“Then in February, when we know about the ground, then we can look to push on and start building for the future.
“Tiago has been playing well when he has come on and is going to get a chance to stake a claim over the next couple of games.
“He was cup tied on Tuesday, so will need a couple of games, but he is well in our plans.
“Another positive is that Adam Hunt will be going out on loan somewhere in the next couple of weeks. It’ll be great to have him back as he is a great player for us.
“Mark had a bit of a set-back which is not good at all. He felt something in his knee again so will be pretty low at the moment.
“It’s back to square one and I feel for him as he has worked ever so hard and we felt we were getting there with him about to go out on loan.
“My gut feeling is he will have to go for a second opinion and see a surgeon.”
Di Paola is expecting no easy ride on Boxing Day with Surrey-based strugglers Godalming the visitors at Gorings Mead.
He added: “They beat Walton Casuals the other night, who bumped us off the pitch down there. They are fighting for their lives and will win more games over the next few months.
“We are not away from the relegation battle yet and can’t believe we are so I think the players will be up for a big game.”
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