Lovell praises his Welling side
Lovell praises his Welling side

Park View Road hosted an unbelievable North Kent A2 thriller as Welling United and Ebbsfleet United shared seven goals with the Wings coming out on top.

It was Welling’s first victory under Steve Lovell and he was full of praise for his team. He said “We made a few changes as I needed to do after Saturday. I thought it was a bad performance on Saturday, a bad individual performance, but I think the boys tonight made a great effort, every one of them

“It’s amazing that when people play to the best of their ability, that’s what we can do and that’s what we’ve got to keep pushing for. I’m still trying to get to know the squad and trying to get to know players. Again, I played three boys tonight like Quba (Gordon) and Doey (Scott Doe) who haven’t played for me this season, played a different formation and I thought the differences between the two performances today and Saturday was Dipo (Akinyemi). Dipo was magnificent and that’s what I expect from him.

“He scored two goals and could have had a couple of others and I thought he was excellent. He brought everybody into the game. The ball came to him and he held it up.”

Despite being pleased with his team, there will be changes for the next game, and Lovell explained why. “On Saturday, I’ll give other boys a game.” he said “I need to know what the squad is, what it’s like. There are some players that I haven’t seen like Kaleem (Simon) and Stefan (Ilic) and Lionel (Ainsworth) and Dom (Vose) so there will be changes on Saturday.

“I’ll use this as a base to have a look at players for next year. A lot of players out there tonight have done themselves really good with regards to me for looking at them next year.”

Sadly, Doe didn’t manage to make it to half time before limping off. Lovell said “Him and Quba, they haven’t played. They haven’t played hardly any football so it’s nice to get them out on the field, they did well, so when they get themselves fit and playing regularly, they’ll be great acquisitions for us.

“Rob (Strachan) came on and did well again. I’m pleased with the whole team and against a full time outfit with one of the biggest budgets in the league, to beat them is a great achievement for the boys. I’m really pleased for them.”

He knew what to expect from the Ebbsfleet players and laughed “I signed most of them in the summer and they’re all good lads and they’re good players and it showed that they’re a good team. They played some good football but we defended well. We got them on the counter-attack where we thought we would get them and we scored four really good goals and I think that we thoroughly deserved the win.”

There is some doubt about who Welling will be playing on Saturday as they are due to play Bath City but the Romans haven’t played since the end of the two week break. “If we play Bath here on Saturday, there could be a few new faces in the side and give these boys a rest because they deserve a rest after tonight and it gives me a chance to look at other players so whether we go somewhere else, we’ll have a game.

“Everybody gave everything and that’s what you’ve got to ask for every week. We’ve got a big enough squad so the team that goes out on Saturday will have to show me what they can do again.

If they play a game in a game in midweek then they can train on Thursday and perhaps miss a game Saturday, or play Saturday and do a bit of training on Tuesday, it’s a balance because you can’t play Saturday, Tuesday, Saturday because that’s where the injuries occur so they’ve got to have a rest period. They’ve got to have a rest period in between so they might have to miss one game and play one game a week but I’ve got players now that I can look at between now and the end of the season and we’ll see where we go.

“I’ll be rotating and giving boys a break. The boys who’ve played tonight, every one of them has put me in the picture of what we’re going to do next year. I just want to see that from the rest of the squad and if I keep hold of twenty players, and they all show me what they can do, we’re in a strong position. There’s a game Tuesday, we’ve got Tonbridge on Tuesday and it’s another game to look forward to.”

All in all, he is not unhappy with the overall start. He explained “In the last three games, we’ve played Dartford, we’ve played Dorking, we’ve played Ebbsfleet, three of the best teams in the league and we’ve had one win, one draw and one defeat. I would have taken that before the three games and I think anybody would have taken that so it’s a really good three weeks we’ve had and if the league continues, we will be fine.” 

Image courtesy of Keith Gillard