Yeovil Town manager Mark Cooper has said striker Jake Hyde is coming back to fitness having handed him a starting place for today’s visit by Dover Athletic in National League South today.

The former Wrexham frontman has scored three times coming off the bench in his past five matches and has been paired up front alongside Exeter City loanee Sonny Cox as the Glovers go in search of a record-breaking 13th consecutive win.

Top scorer Rhys Murphy and fellow frontman Frank Nouble, who scored in the 3-1 win at his former club Torquay United in midweek, are both named on the substitutes’ bench with Cooper looking to manage his frontline with Farnborough Town coming to Huish Park on Tuesday night.

Speaking to BBC Somerset’s Sheridan Robins ahead of the match, the manager said: “Hydey has come off the bench and scored goals which we knew he would. He had a fragmented pre-season and he is just starting to look fit and free of any niggles and he’s done really well coming off the bench. It’s important we try and manage the older guys up front and keep everyone fresh.

The data was really high (against Torquay United on Tuesday night), Frank was amazing, he was playing like a man possessed and he got cramp towards the end. We have two big games today and Tuesday (at home to Farnborough Town) and we have to spread the workload.”

Alex Whittle will be missing against Farnborough Town on Tuesday night.
Picture courtesy of Mike Kunz.

Once again, the home side’s defence is unchanged and Cooper said the continuity they been able to achieve has been a major part of their success. Full-back Alex Whittle starts today but will be missing against Farnborough having picked up his fifth booking of the season at Torquay.

The manager added: “You can see the benefit of the continuity we have had there. The relationships, the understanding and the work we have done with them in terms of their distances has been first class. Jake Wannell looks a super player now, Morgs (Williams) is a Rolls-Royce and the two full-backs (Alex Whittle and Michael Smith) have been outstanding, as has the goalkeeper (Joe Day). 

Whittle is a big miss for us on Tuesday, but you are never going to get through a season with all your players fit, ready and free of suspension every game.

Dover Athletic, who are managed by former Yeovil youth team player Mitch Brundle, come to Somerset second-from-bottom of the National League South table with only one win to their name.

But, as Cooper often says, he has done his homework on the opposition and is not getting carried away with talk of records.

He added: “It is a big message for us, we have to respect every team we play and Dover are no different. We have done loads of homework and they have serious threats they can pose and we have to be at the top of our game to get a result.

It seems to be every week we are talking about a record, but we just have to do the job that is in front of us and that is getting three points today. Whatever it means, it is only three points and that is what we have to focus on.


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