EAST Thurrock United boss John Coventry has labelled tomorrow’s National League South clash with Weston-super-Mare as ‘must-win’.

Both sides find themselves in the drop zone with just four fixtures remaining.

And Coventry understands that some onlookers may hold the view that whoever loses the encounter, at Rookery Hill, will suffer relegation.

“There is no doubt that it’s a must-win game,” said the long-serving Rocks boss.

“If I was a neutral, I would be looking at this game as the team that loses will go down.

“I think that they will go down if we win because then they will be so many points adrift.

“But if we lose then I don’t think we would necessarily be certain for relegation, although it also depends on results elsewhere.

“There are three teams - Hungerford Town, Gloucester City and Eastbourne Borough - who are just above the drop zone and it would depend on their results as well.

“But we need to just focus on ourselves and make sure we get the three points.”

East Thurrock will be on a high after sealing the first Essex Senior Cup crown in the club’s 50-year history on Tuesday night.

However, the 3-1 victory over Chelmsford City came at a price as goalscorer Ben Marlow has been ruled out of this weekend’s match with a hamstring injury and other players also picked up knocks at Colchester United’s JobServe Community Stadium.

“We picked up a few injuries on Tuesday night and that won’t help because our squad is small as it is,” added Coventry.

“I don’t even know what sort of team I can put out because we have been having to patch people up and put them on the pitch.

“Ben Marlow is definitely out with a recurrence of a hamstring problem.”

Rocks are currently four points adrift of safety, while Weston-super-Mare make the trip to south Essex currently bottom of the standings.

Coventry admitted: “Although they need the points more than us, they wouldn’t go into any game with a gung-ho attitude.

“They don’t approach any game like that, but I know they are quite open when they don’t have the ball.

“They like to play from the back and the full-backs push up the pitch.

“There will be gaps that they leave and it’s a case of whether we can exploit that.

“They have a new manager and won against Dartford last week, but those results often come after a new manager is appointed.”