LUDLOW Town manager Mike Seaborne is approaching the e n d o f t h e ye a r w i t h m i x e d emotions.

“Naturally , I am very pleased that Town are sitting at the topo f - t h e - t a b l e i n t h e Pre m i e r Di v i s i o n o f t h e Shropshire County League, although we have played more games than some of our rivals,” said the Town boss.

“But I realise that we will need to improve our all-round performance if we are to go on and finish in the top two come the end of the season.”

When he took the job on in the close season, Seabourne was aiming for a top four finish. He anticipated that his forwards would be able to score goals at the level, but was concerned as to whether his defence would b e a b l e t o p e r f o rm t o t h e required standard.

The forwards have lived up to e x p e c t a t i o n s i n t h e m a i n , although they have been guilty of not being more clinical in some crucial encounters. The defence has also been found wanting on occasions.

T h e b i g w i n ove r s e c o n d - placed Newpor t Town in the l e a g u e, a n d a l s o t h e n a r row defeat to higher-graded Wem Town in the County Cup have suggested they are capable of mounting a challenge for the title.

But the defeat to Ellesmere Rangers Reser ves in the Ron Jones Memorial Cup highlights the need for improvement.

Fixtures against lower-order and mid-table sides, Broseley, Dawley and Ketley Bank during December give Town an excellent chance of starting the New Year in pole position.

“We will need to hot top form during our tough schedule in the New Year if our ambitions for the side are to be realised,”

said Seabourne.