Mark Cooper has stamped out any talk of Yeovil Town pushing for a place in the National League play-offs after they went three games unbeaten.

A hard-fought point at leaders Notts County at the weekend meant the Glovers have picked up five points from their last three matches ahead of the visit from FC Halifax Town to Somerset this weekend.

The visitors are in decent form having won three of their last five matches and reports in West Yorkshire suggest they are looking towards challenging for the promotion places again. After a poor start, they sit 14th in the table with Yeovil five places and six points behind them having played a game more.

Asked by Three Valleys Radio reporter Adi Hopper if he believed his side’s form could have them looking in a similar direction, Cooper said: “No. The next game (is what we’re focused on). I won’t entertain any talk (about play-offs) we are miles away from it, you have to win four or five games on the trot (to be considered in contention).

We just have to win the next game on Saturday and concentrate fully on Halifax.

He added: “In the position we’re in it’s about making sure we come out of the game with something. I don’t want us to play really well and pretty and not get anything.

Whatever we do, we have to make sure we get something out of the game. We have a duty to entertain our fans, but it’s important we get a result.

We have to perform really well to get anything off Halifax because they are really durable. Chris Millington has stepped up to manager (from assistant manager to Pete Wild last season) and taken to it like a duck to water and done a great job on limited resources.

I have watched their last three or four games and they are a tough team to beat.

Defender Ben Richards-Everton will be available for selection against the Shaymen having missed the last three games through injury.

Cooper also confirmed skipper Josh Staunton, who was a doubt ahead of last weekend’s stalemate at Notts County, had also trained on Thursday despite having a tough 90 minutes against the league leaders.

Ben Richards-Everton. Picture courtesy of Mike Kunz.

The manager said: “There’s no secret that at the top level, you have to run, the top teams run more than most. We had to run (a lot at Notts County) to hold on for a valuable point.

All of the boys were out on their feet at the end, which is how it should be, but they’ve all had time to recover. Josh has trained today and he’s in good nick.

He confirmed that winger Charlie Wakefield was still out through injury.

Asked about new signing Louis Britton, who appeared as an 89th-minute substitute last weekend, the boss said: “He’s settled in fine. the issue he has is he’s a number nine like (Alex) Fisher, who has been outstanding.

“He has to train so well and when he gets his minutes, play so well that he has a chance to try and take Fisher’s place.

You have to have competition, if you have no competition you become lazy and complacent and you can’t have that.”

The manager was asked about the form of centre-half Max Hunt who was part of a defensive masterclass seven days ago having been out of favour under previous manager Chris Hargreaves.

Central defender Max Hunt. Picture courtesy of Mike Kunz.

Speaking after the draw at Notts County, Hunt said he was not looking back on a fr*st*ating period at the start of the season when he found himself out of the side.

Asked about the player’s renaissance, Cooper said: “He’s 6’4″, he’s decent on the ball, he’s great in the air and whilst I have been here he’s been a good defender.

I can only take as I find and along with some others they have defended really well. Defenders defend as a unit and they have done really well.

It’s a lesson for younger players, I have had a discussion with one or two of them, if they are not in the team, they have to be ready because you have to train and prepare that you are going to play.

Chiori Johnson was out of the team, then we get an illness or injury (in Ben Richards-Everton) and he plays and stays in the team because he’s done well.

“Hunty has been out of the team, a new manager has come in and put him in the team and he’s done well.

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