SILSDEN boss Danny Forrest is pleased his side finally showed some defensive steel on Saturday, as they gear up for three Bradford District derbies in a week.

The Sils were unlucky to lose 1-0 at Maltby Main in the Northern Counties East League Premier Division at the weekend, but after conceding six at Yorkshire Amateur and five in cup defeats to Bootle and Guisborough Town already this season, there was one obvious improvement.

Forrest said: “Defensively it was a massive positive. We’ve conceded far too many this season, but on Saturday we were tactically disciplined, strong and brave.

“It’s what I want to see and if we can repeat that, we’ll restrict teams to few chances. But it’s got to happen week to week now.”

Despite that fine defensive effort, Silsden still came away from South Yorkshire with a defeat.

A frustrated Forrest said: “I felt we were worthy of at least a point. I’d like to think I’m honest, and will admit if we didn’t deserve anything, but I don’t think anyone could have grumbled on Saturday if we’d got a draw.

“Maltby put on some pressure in the first 15 or 20 minutes (when they scored) and then in the last 10 when we were throwing bodies forward looking for an equaliser.

“But other than that they didn’t really trouble us, and Alfie Darke didn’t have loads to do in goal.”

The Cobbydalers will not have chance to build on that solid performance until they visit Albion Sports next Wednesday.

That one is followed by a game at Thackley three days later, before a home clash with Eccleshill United on November 3.

The game with Albion is particularly intriguing, with the club having gone through wholesale changes on and off the pitch since the departure of manager Kulwinder Sandhu last summer, after an astonishing 34 years in charge.

They were poor last season, but have now brought in joint-managers Pav Singh and Ishy Hussain, as well as some quality signings, like Eccleshill defensive duo Sam Bradley and Aran Basi.

Forrest said: “Albion made big changes after Kulwinder left. They’ve strengthened well this season, and brought in proven players at this level.

“It’s a new look side but I know a lot of their players, as being from the area you build up knowledge.

“They’ve got a good side now, and it’s no surprise they’ve been getting points this season.”

Thackley, who have just signed experienced midfielder Mark Trueman from Silsden, are up after that, and Forrest said: “I know (Thackley boss) Pat McGuire well. He has a stubborn team, but they have quality too.

“Mark is a good friend of mine and Pat’s and he wants to play, but with his job at Bradford City (Under-18s coach), it was difficult at times for him here.

“I really like Mark and I’m gutted as I would have liked to keep hold of him, but it’s just one of them things.

“I wish him all the best and he might find that being at Thackley suits his schedule better.”

Talking about derbies in general, Forrest said: “Coming into this league, the derbies against teams in and around Bradford were what we were particularly excited for.

“It’s always nice to have them, they tend to be unpredictable, and there’s good teams from Bradford in this league.”