Heanor prepare for local derby cup test at Ilkeston

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Heanor Town’s eighth home league defeat of the season was another disappointment for supporters last Saturday.

Perhaps the three week lay-off due to the weather had something to do with it, but it was the same for both sides as Retford had not played also during the same period.

It wasn’t helped by the fact that Heanor have never beaten Retford United in any competition, either home or away, and the fact that it took them 84 minutes of the latest encounter to conjure up a decent chance showed that this game was only going to add to the statistics.

It is difficult to put a finger on the reasons why the Lions are a far more impressive side away from home, but perhaps the fact that the Town Groundplaying surface is one of the best in the league has something to do with why the opposition always seem to fare better when visiting Heanor.

Tom Cooper-Richards is the latest recruit while supporters were surprised to learn prior to last Saturday’s game that the popular Graham Wells has been released and looks likely to link up with his home town club Holwell Sports.

Wells joined the Lions from Holwell Sports in 2008 under the managership of Jamie Bennett, and this season has struggled for fitness following a chest infection, and also with the increased travelling.

The popular winger made a total of 165 appearances for the Lions, 35 as a substitute, and scored 38 goals.

His appearances this season have been limited to just eight starts in 19 appearances and he scored two goals.

Jimmy Spiers has also been released and has joined Radcliffe Olympic, for whom he played last week, and James Rushby appears to have found his way back to Graham Street Prims, scoring the two goals which won them their East Midlands Counties League game at Radford last week end.

Heanor will have a chance to further improve their impressive away record this weekend when they visit neighbours Arnold Town on Saturday (3pm) in a Northern Counties East League game .

The Reserves, meanwhile, host Matlock Town Reserves on Saturday (3pm).