The phrase “A man’s home is his castle” is one being adopted by Padiham boss Liam Smith in the Hallmark Security Premier Division this season.
Steve Cunningham’s former right hand man, now working alongside Dixon Lambert at the club, is challenging his players to become the rulers of the Ruby Civil Arena, making their home ground a fortress in the process.
Smith wants his squad to feel secure and settled in that environment while making it a difficult and uncomfortable venue for the opposition to visit.
There were certainly signs of that when the Storks beat newcomers Whitchurch Alport at the weekend with new signing Lee Knight’s late strike securing the points in a five-goal thriller.
Chris Turner opened the scoring in the 36th minute with a beautifully driven finish across David Parton that nestled in the side-netting.
Sean Griffiths levelled for the visitors in time added on in the first half but skipper Turner got his side’s noses in front once more with 20 minutes remaining.
The midfielder converted from the spot after Knight was upended in the box, firing to the goalkeeper’s left.
Simon Everall drew the away side level for a second time just three minutes later and it looked as though that would be the outcome.
However, with four minutes remaining, Knight tapped home from close range, picking up the scraps after Parton had spilled a Danny Wilkins attempt.
The visitors finished the game with 10 men after substitute Nicholas Porter was given his marching orders for a reckless challenge.
Ahead of Wednesday’s game against Silsden, Smith said: “It’s nice to get on a bit of a run. To have two home games in quick succession is nice but we need to capitalise on them because we’ll have a few away games coming up. Home form is massive for any club.
“We’ve recorded back-to-back league wins for the first time since February. We’ve stressed the importance of that to the players because we need to make our home ground a fortress and an uncormfortable place for the opposition when they come here.
“I’m happy. The most pleasing part of it was the character that we showed to get the three points. It was nice to show that resolve, grit and endeavour to pull through.”