CHRIS Hughes will bid to lift his Newtown side for Saturday’s derby clash at home to Aberystwyth Town (2.30).

The Robins suffered Boxing Day heartache at the hands of their Mid Wales rivals last week, ending their faint hopes of reaching the top six before the mid-season split.

Newtown now have two derbies before the split which will see them spend the remainder of a disappointing campaign fending off the spectre of relegation.

However victory on Saturday would deliver a damaging blow to the Seasiders’ own top six bid.

“It’s disappointing,” said Hughes. “We had chances at the end of the first-half but we were poor in the second-half and did not ask enough questions.

“We switched off for their goal and the level of intensity was not good enough but I cannot be too harsh on my players, six of which were not fit to play but played through the pain.”

Midfielder Tom Goodwin sustained a dead leg and forward Luke Boundford suffered a calf injury with Hughes hopeful both will recover for the weekend.

Despite only fixtures against the rest of the league’s bottom feeders to look forward to from next month until the end of the season, the Robins could go some way to ensuring Aberystwyth Town join them in the relegation conference with victory on Saturday

Hughes said: “We must re-group now and prepare for a big game. It’s a derby and our fans will want a result

“We will need a better performance, especially in the final third but we will keep on working hard and hope a positive result on Saturday will give us a platform for 2017.”