MANAGER Brad Quinton is expecting to make full use of his squad on a busy weekend of football for Braintree Town.

The Iron head into the Bank Holiday weekend on the back of an impressive 2-1 win against Hampton and Richmond Borough in the Vanarama National League South and resume with two games against sides who have had very differing starts to the season.

Fourth-placed Braintree head to rock-bottom side Whitehawk on Saturday, before a fixture against current leaders and so far unbeaten St Albans City at the Ironmongery Direct Stadium on Monday (kick-off 3pm).

With no midweek action this week, Quinton took the opportunity to test his players' legs in an in-house game against the club's own reserve side on Tuesday as well as using the opportunity to have a look at several trial players.

The Braintree boss said he hoped both Karl Oliyide and Ricky Gabriel, who missed the Hampton and Richmond game with a dead leg and a groin problem respectively, would be fit to return for the weekend games although both would be assessed at training on Thursday.

Central defender Christian Frimpong will also return after a one-match suspension, but Quinton said it didn't mean the players would necessarily come straight back into the starting line-up if others had impressed in their absence.

He said: "We had the game against our reserves as there were some players who I wanted to get game-time into.

"It's a busy weekend coming up and I'll be looking to mix and change it where I need to if it's the right thing to do.

"I know players want to play every single game but this league is very physical and we need to be sensible.

"Players who have come in have done well and it's my motto that if you are playing well then you keep the shirt.

"If players are showing me that they are willing to learn and work hard in the week leading up to a game and if I see that determination, then I can't see why I would want to take them out.

"It's down to those guys to keep impressing, but I think I'll have some tough choices to make after training on Thursday."

Quinton was pleased to see his team bounce back from their first defeat of the season - against East Thurrock United - as they beat Hampton and Richmond with a Luke Allen strike and a Billy Crook penalty last weekend.

And, despite the earlier setback, he was impressed that his players had the confidence to keep playing the way that he wants them to.

He added: "It's going well; the boys are training well, looking after themselves and looking forward to games and that happens when you are playing good football.

"Long may that continue, but there is a long way to go.

"The football that myself and the staff want us to be playing is being played and we have the shape that we want.

"There was the blip (against East Thurrock) but the way that our young players came back against a very strong Hampton and Richmond side was very pleasing.

"We are still playing it out from the back and that's great as people are playing under pressure and still have the confidence to do that.

"I think the fans are noticing that and if you have young players doing that now then they will only get better as they get older.

"A lot of teams in this league want to hit you at set pieces and when the ball is dead so we also need to stay organised, dig in and fight for one another, which I thought we did well against Hampton and Richmond.

"We are keeping feet on the ground, but overall, the boys are enjoying themselves and I'm very pleased."

However, Quinton isn't resting on any laurels and admits that he is still looking to build his squad.

"We are a work in progress and we are still looking," he added.

"I never stop looking and you have to do that.

"You put work in as a player and you have to do that as a manager - nothing has changed for me and I'm continuously looking at how we can be better.

"I think that filters through to the players and we are looking to bring in more players if it's right that we do so.

"There were some trialists in the in-house game we played on Tuesday and we are also talking to some more experienced players as well."