BOSS Jason Matthews revealed playmaker Chris Shephard is set to miss out on Weymouth’s huge league encounter at Poole Town this evening (7.45pm).

Shephard has been suffering with a back injury over the last couple of weeks and was forced off at half-time with the issue during his side’s shock 3-2 defeat at struggling Bedworth United on Saturday.

He is not expected to recover in time for the Terras’ crucial tussle at Tatnam tonight.

Midfielder Dean Evans also serves the second of a two-match ban and George Rigg is unavailable for the Dorset derby through injury.

Speaking ahead of the contest, Matthews, who branded his side’s performance at the weekend as “terrible”, told Echosport: “Chris Shephard will miss out because of his back which is a blow.

“It’s disappointing, you want your big players for your big games and we will really miss Sheps.

“But I have a lot of midfielders in my squad and one of them needs to step up to the plate and take their chance.”

A win for the visitors would ensure Weymouth close the gap on the Dolphins to just four points in the Evo-Stik Southern Premier Division.

Poole, who are still odds on with the bookmakers to lift the league title this term, were left kicking their heels on Saturday after their scheduled clash at Redditch was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.

That meant Tatnam boss Tom Killick’s side were knocked off the league summit by Chippenham Town, who took their chance to head the way at present with 58 points.

Matthews added: “To get something out of the Poole encounter puts us right back in the mix and that’s what we need to do.

“Poole are a very good side, they have been over two or three seasons but we need to go there, give a positive performance and give our fans, who usually travel in fantastic numbers to Poole, something to cheer about.

“They have drawn four on the bounce but it’s all about us. I know if we play well we will give Poole a good game.
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“There will be changes because of Sheps being out and we have a vision for the game and what we want to do. We will take it from there.”

A win for the Terras this evening would give them their fifth away league victory of the campaign.

Dorset Echo

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