Merthyr Town are on their way to Dorset for Tuesday’s BetVictor Southern Premier fixture against Poole Town.
The Martyrs are keen to bounce back after slipping to a 2-1 defeat against Metropolitan Police at the MetCoaches Stadium.
Player-manager Gavin Williams and his team suffered during January with three players moving on – Kyle Patten to Barry Town United, Ryan Prosser to Cambrian and Clydach Vale plus Ashley Evans to Penybont.
Williams is working within a player budget set to maintain financial stability at the club, while Merthyr are running a ‘Boost the Budget’ initiative with proceeds given to him on a weekly basis.
Merthyr Town have established a partnership with Cardiff City’s Academy and Williams will have development players available at some stage.
A club statement said: “We continue to be financially stable and ask that everybody gets behind the club and the team, who are already proving that when we’re all together we can achieve great success.”
Full-back Dan Summerfield has celebrated his 100th Merthyr appearance. He is in a second spell with the club, having spent three seasons with the Martyrs from 2013 before leaving to study a university degree at Birmingham University.
The right-sided defender can play anywhere across the back four and previously played for Swansea City, Newport County, Halesowen, Stratford Town and Penybont.
He was in Merthyr’s Southern League South & West Division title-winning team under former manager Steve Jenkins in 2014.
“I’m proud to have played 100-plus games for a club of this size with such a good fan base,” said Summerfield. “When I joined in 2013 I did very well to cement my place in the team at a young age and racked up a lot of games in my first two seasons.
“Thankfully I’ve had the chance to come back to the club and get past that 100 appearance mark. Hopefully there’s many more to come.”
Merthyr were bitterly disappointed to lose against Met Police despite producing an excellent team display.
Centre-half Kai Hamilton (53 mins) and George Frith (73) scored for Police, while Owain Jones netted Merthyr’s goal on 90 minutes from a chance set up by Ian Traylor.
The Martyrs should have equalised when they were awarded an injury time penalty, but Traylor failed to convert from the spot. Met goalkeeper Rhys Foster produced his second penalty save in two matches.
Merthyr Town created a number of big chances and Traylor had the first after three minutes when he was picked out by Jamie Veale. Foster made an outstanding save.
Traylor reacted quickest to a low driven corner from Jones midway through the first half, but his header was cleared.
Adam Davies played an outstanding pass down the line to Traylor who picked out Jones, but Police defenders managed to cut out the attack.
Ismail Yakubu glanced a header just wide, while Jones looked certain to score when he fired past goalkeeper Foster, but a defender cleared off the line.
Centre-forward Gethyn Hill went close twice, first from an overhead kick which flew just side and then with a header which was saved.
Merthyr Town: Alex Harris, Dan Summerfield (Ben Swallow 60), Adam Davies (capt), Ismail Yakubu, Jarrad Wright, Keiran Lewis (Corey Jenkins 73), Eliot Richards (Gavin Williams 73), Owain Jones, Jamie Veale, Gethyn Hill, Ian Traylor. Subs: Corey Jenkins, Gavin Williams, Lewis Binns.
Merthyr Town fixtures
Tuesday 4 Poole Town v Merthyr Town
Saturday 8 Chesham United v Merthyr Town
Tuesday 11 Merthyr Town v Taunton Town
Saturday 15 Merthyr Town v Dorchester Town
Saturday 22 Blackfield and Langley v Merthyr Town
Tuesday 25 Wimborne Town v Merthyr Town
Saturday 29 Merthyr Town v Beaconsfield Town
Saturday 7 Salisbury v Merthyr Town
Saturday 14 Taunton v Merthyr Town
Saturday 21 Merthyr Town v Truro City
Saturday 28 Hayes and Yeading v Merthyr Town
Saturday 4 Merthyr Town v Poole Town
Saturday 11 Merthyr Town v Tiverton Town
Monday 13 Yate Town v Merthyr Town
Saturday 18 Hartley Wintney v Merthyr Town
Saturday 25 Merthyr Town v Hendon