WINSFORD United will be looking to get back on track after a tough week.

A humiliating 5-0 loss at home to Skelmersdale United on Saturday was followed by Lee Duckworth’s side then falling 2-1 at Barnoldswick Town on Tuesday.

They will head to fourth place Irlam on Saturday, kick-off 3pm, before meeting neighbours Northwich Victoria at Barnton’s Townfield ground on Tuesday, kick-off 7.45pm.

It appears another tricky week is in store, with Irlam currently holding down fourth place in the North West Counties Premier Division and looking to make it three league wins in a row.

Their only defeat in their last four outings came against league leaders 1874 Northwich.

Blues and Vics are two of the sides looking to close the gap on the current top-five clubs, so there will be plenty at stake in the ‘derby’ too.

What came on Saturday was totally unexpected.

Winsford leaked five goals for the first time this season and against a Skem side struggling in the lower reaches of the division.

In fact, the visitors had gone eight games in the league without a win, their last coming on September 10, while Duckworth’s men had taken five matches to concede their five previous goals.

Blues could not blame the loss on Darcy O’Connor’s 63rd minute red card either, for Skem were 3-0 ahead by that stage.

Richard Brodie (20, 59) and Emeri Adegbenro (31) had assembled the advantage, and then Tom Croughan (80) and new signing Josh Klein-Davies (90) wrapped things up for Skem.

United will have been frustrated by a number of missed chances early in the game, including one effort from Brian Matthews hitting the crossbar.

Winsford headed to Barnoldswick on Tuesday looking to restore some pride and they did remain in the hunt for at least a point until the final whistle.

They showed character too, with Steve Jenyons pulling a goal back two minutes after Richard Seear had given the hosts a 2-0 cushion in the final quarter.

Ryan Shenton (55) gave Barnoldswick a lead that they never went on to lose.

Blues will now look to build on that improvement shown at Barnoldswick.