'They are the best team in the league behind Cray Wanderers' - Horsham boss Di Paola with heavy praise for Hastings United

Horsham manager Dominic Di Paola. SR1720470. Picture by Steve Robards
Horsham manager Dominic Di Paola. SR1720470. Picture by Steve Robards

Horsham manager Dominic Di Paola says they are facing the second best team in the league tonight as Hastings United visit Culver Road and he will be reading nothing into their opponent's recent dip in form.

Victory for the home side would see them pull to within a point of their visitors, who have hit a dip in form of late - winning just one of their last four matches, a run that included a shock 4-1 hammering at Herne Bay.

They were held to a 1-1 draw with Guernsey on Saturday, although had to play a big spell of the second half with nine men.

Di Paola said: "Our league is such a weird league, you can have a run of six or eight games and say you are in form. The Bostik Premier has been similar this year, but our league is normally very strange as a team will often go on a run out or nowhere, like Herne Bay recently.

"From Hastings' result Saturday, they had nine men for a lot of it as well so that changes that. The Herne Bay one could just be one of a freak one like we have had at times, they happen.
"I think they are a really good team. I have said it all season that they are probably the best team in the league behind Cray.

"I feel like it sounds as I am batting it off a bit, but we aren't that worried and there isn't a lot of pressure. I am not saying 'this is a game we have to go and win'. There are 14 games left, we have a bit of a cushion between the chasing pack and we are already exceeding expectations really.

"We have a tough couple of months, but we'll approach them the way we had done and give them our best."

Team news sees Lewis Hyde starting the first game of his three-man ban and midfielder Charlie Harris ruled out through injury. Kick-off at Culver Road is 7.30pm.