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Howes keen to bounce back against Oldham

Sam Howes expects his teammates to shrug off the disappointment of the controversial defeat at Eastleigh when they travel to Oldham Athletic on Tuesday night.

The Stones went down 1-0 on Saturday to a goal from Tristan Abrahams that was laced in drama after some Wealdstone defenders stopped following a foul on Deji Elerwere that the linesman spotted and was flagging furiously for the referee to award.

However, Lee Collins waved play on and Abrahams took advantage of the hesitancy to win the game for the home side with a 59th-minute goal. The Stones will now look to show the depth of their character against John Sheridan's team under the lights at Boundary Park in their third game of the season.

"It was a frustrating one," said the goalkeeper. "I think over the course of 90 minutes we've defended well and they didn't really create a lot. I really only had two shots to deal with, but that's football and these things can happen. We obviously go again quite quickly on Tuesday against Oldham.

"We've got a good group of boys and we've all said a bit in the changing room. The good thing is we've got another game within a couple of days so we can obviously put it right against Oldham away. Everyone's looking forward to and we'll go there and give a good account of ourselves."

Howes return for his third spell at The Vale in the summer after signing a one-year contract with an option for a further year. The 24-year-old joined on an emergency loan last season for two games and played for the Stones while on loan from West Ham in 2015.

"It's brilliant to be back, absolutely brilliant," he said. "I'm obviously thrilled to be back here as I enjoyed the two games at the back end of the last season. I'm enjoying my time here as the boys are good, the management group is good and obviously you saw today the amount of fans brought down to Eastleigh was fantastic. You could hear them throughout the whole game which is fantastic. Fingers crossed we can start putting some points on the board soon for them."

Howes expects Stones to be more fluent at Boundary Park on Tuesday night.

"We didn't really got into our rhythm [against Eastleigh]," he said. "We know that we can play better but at the same time, we've got to understand it was the second game of the season. We've got a new squad, new players like myself so we're taking time to gel, but mark my words it'll be a good season as we've got a very good squad in there."

• Pictures by Jon Taffel

° Interview by Will Bewsey

The Stones will be in their yellow kit on Tuesday night. Click HERE to order yours


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