Wilson faces changes in defence as Ilkeston bid to keep good run going
RUSSELL Cooke and Greg Pearson are set to step into the heart of Ilkeston's defence when they visit Eastwood Town today – weather permitting.
Ilkeston, one of the form teams in the Evo-Stik Premier Division as they aim to stretch a five-game unbeaten run, will be without regular defensive partners Joe Maguire and Jide Maduako.
Maguire still has to serve a one-match ban, since Saturday's game against Nantwich Town was postponed.
Maduako's one-month loan from Leicester City has expired – although he is currently injured anyway.
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The same is true of Ilkeston's two loan players from Notts County, Greg Tempest and Curtis Thompson.
"I'm talking to Leicester about the possibility of bringing Jide back but it's not an issue at the moment because of his injury," said Ilkeston manager Kevin Wilson.
"It's a similar situation with the Notts County lads, because Greg Tempest and Curtis Thompson are working their way back to fitness.
"Hopefully, when the time is right, they will be able to re-join us because there's no doubt that the four lads on loan have made a big contribution to our change of fortune."
One player who has not made the difference left the Robins at the weekend.
Striker Jordan Smith has joined Blue Square Bet North side Boston United with the best wishes of Wilson.
Smith was formerly with Stamford and Corby, where he scored 14 BSB North goals last season.
Graham Drury was his manager at both of those clubs and he rejoins him there now.
Smith has struggled to make the expected impact in his time at the New Manor Ground and his only goal was at Marine at the start of this month.
"I feel a bit sorry for Jordan because he really wanted to make his mark with us and, for one reason or another, that didn't happen," said Wilson.
"He arrived at a time when we had a succession of cup matches, for which he was not eligible.
"By the time he was available, he was well short of match-fitness.
"He's gone to Boston and he leaves with our best wishes. I hope he does well – and I'm sure he will."
Wilson was disappointed with Saturday's postponement but hopes that it will not disrupt the momentum that has seen the Robins collect 16 points from the last 21 available.
"We have to keep doing what we've been doing. It's as simple as that," said Wilson.
"Saturday was disappointing becase we were looking to continue our recent good form but there is nothing we can do about it.
"We just have to make sure that we are totally tuned in for trip to Eastwood."