PAT Ahern hopes Witham Town's performance against Heybridge Swifts can be the turning point in this season's Bostik League division north campaign that their display at AFC Hornchurch was last year.

Despite some strong results in cup competitions so far this year, the league has been tough for Witham where their displays haven't always been rewarded in points and they head to bottom club Soham Town Rangers on Saturday sitting just one spot above their hosts.

Having won just once from their ten league outings so far has put them was a similar position to the one the club - then under different management - found themselves in at this stage last year when they had a run of 12 fixtures in all competitions without a win.

That run was broken by a superb display and win at the then leaders, Hornchurch, and Ahern, one of only a handful of players still with the club from that side, hopes the way the team played in their 1-1 draw against play-off chasing Heybridge Swifts last weekend can be a similar catalyst for a move up.

“It was self-belief that got us up the table last year," he said.

“The turning point was the game at Hornchurch where we went and won at the undefeated leaders by sticking to our game plan and doing what the Gaffer told us.

“Equally, against Heybridge, we stuck to the plan and did what we should, but the only difference was we weren’t clinical enough to get it over the line this time.

“But it definitely feels similar with the performance we put in against another high-flying side and hopefully it can mirror what we did last year.

“It’s a positive that we feel disappointed not to have got more from the game against Heybridge because they’re a team who are going to be up challenging for the play-offs as a minimum.

“When we put in performances like that, we know we can compete with teams at the top end of the table.

“I know we have the quality in the squad to challenge those sides.

“We were missing a few against Heybridge and having the strength in depth is a key thing to have.

“Hopefully it’s a bit of a turning point, but it was ultimately a bit frustrating because I felt we out-created them, especially in the second half, but we just weren’t that clinical.

“Hopefully that will come with time.

“We have been in a bit of a rut like we were at this stage last year, going a month or so without a win, but we can take the positives out of this game.

“We can build on this, especially with games coming up against teams down towards the lower end of the league.

“Confidence will be on the up after this.

“It’s obviously not at an all-time high because of the results we’ve had but we can take positives out of the Heybridge game and go to the Sohams and Tilburys because they are the important games.

“You’d look at where we are at the moment and those are the type of games that do count.

“Against teams in and around us are massive.

“Soham (on Saturday) and Tilbury (on November 20) are games like that.

“We have tended to play teams towards the top end so far so the next month or so will be key and we have to take confidence from the game against Heybridge.

“We know we can do it and it’s just about ensuring we carry on doing it now – there is no room for complacency."