16 August 2012
Ebbsfleet United v Braintree Town
The following is the article I wrote for the Ebbsfleet United v Braintree Town match. Unfortunately, the Fleet lost :-(
Now that the euphoria of the London Olympics is slowly dying down, we can all turn our attention to the Blue Square Premier League and our first home game of the season. Before going any further, I would like to send out a huge ‘well done’ to Team GB on their massive haul of medals. They certainly did us all proud! The GB football team did fairly well too, until that deadly quarter final penalty phobia struck again!
For Ebbsfleet United, and all teams nationwide, the football season is like an Olympic marathon. It’s all about pacing yourself so that you can get to the finish line well ahead of your rivals, and thus ensuring a great final position. In the case of an athlete, the goal is to get onto the winner’s podium with a gold, silver or bronze medal around your neck. In our case, the gold medal equivalent would be a mid-table, or higher, finish in the League and possibly a nice FA Cup run as well. I’m sure the club would not be adverse to a third round away tie versus Chelsea or Arsenal!
A marathon runner typically has to adapt to the circumstances in which they are competing. From hot days to cold and wet conditions, a runner has to have the flexibility to be able to cope with anything that is put in their way. Tactics play a big part too. Does the athlete try and push the pace early, or sit back and try to time themselves for a barnstorming finish? It is also the ability and self-belief, of the athlete that decides the final outcome.
Likewise, Liam Daish has to take into account a number of factors when deciding on the starting line-up and the tactics that need to be employed. These factors can include current injuries to players, the condition of the playing field, how the opposition is likely to play, and the best way to counter this together with ensuring that the chemistry of the team remains unchanged. Over the course of the next 8 months we will be able to see how all of this will unfold.
Following the departure of a number of key players in the close season, Liam has been busy in the transfer market finding suitable replacements. A big welcome to new Fleet players Moses Ashikodi, Nathan Elder, Patrick Ada, Phil Walsh and the return of Liam Enver-Marum and Ryan Blake. Let’s get behind our new signings and hope that they settle in as quickly as possible. Certainly during the pre-season games they all performed extremely well.
A big welcome to Braintree Town who are our first visitors to Stonebridge Road. Like ourselves, they finished comfortably in mid-table last season. They too will want to get the new season off to a flying start. So we should be in for a fantastic evening of football. Their manager, Alan Devonshire, knows exactly what is required to compete at this level and will be ensuring that he has a squad good enough to perform in this division.
Enjoy the game and please get behind the players. We have seen what happens at the Olympics when there are 80,000 spectators cheering on their country. So let’s do likewise here. Also, a club like ours can always do with some extra help. If you feel like you would like to assist then please contact the club, or MYFC (www.myfootballclub.co.uk) for further information.
UP THE FLEET!