Gorleston boosted by Cockrill return

Gorleston have been lifted by the return of Darren Cockrill as next Saturday’s season-defining Norfolk Senior Cup semi-final clash with Norwich City Reserves at Emerald Park (3) hoves into view.

Cockrill decided to retire from the Greens earlier this season, but has had a rethink after talks with the management.

“It’s a massive boost. He is a personality. He has got lots of experience and is Gorleston through and through. I am really grateful that he has decided to come back,” said Gorleston joint-manager Richard Daniels.

The versatile central defender and central midfielder who last played in the win over Diss in November has been turning out for Sunday side Camden Tavern, who entertain AFC Wanderers in the Norfolk Sunday Senior Cup semi-final next weekend.

Meanwhile, weather permitting, Gorleston will be looking to end a run which has seen them fail to win a league game since mid-November when they host second-placed Brantham tomorrow (3).

Daniels and joint manager Stu Larter were keeping their fingers crossed that the game goes ahead.

“If the game is off we will go into the Norwich City game not having had any football for three weeks – which is not ideal.”

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He admitted that the cup was something to look forward to during the current slump in league form, which has seen the Greens fail to win a Ridgeons game since mid-November after a flying start to the season saw the top flight new boys beat Wroxham and Dereham. “I feel as though other teams have worked us out and it’s something Stu and I hold our hands up to. I feel as though we have got a bit of a soft centre – it’s no disrespect to any of the other players. We have hit a bit of a brick wall – but you don’t become a bad team overnight.”

Another new recruit announced this week is Luke Spires, a central midfielder who has been playing for the Army, and who is a friend of Gorleston captain Eddie Thompson.

“We are interested in one or two others,” said Daniels.