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Stringer pleased with Welling players
Stringer pleased with Welling players

Cup football in 2023-24 ended for Welling United when they were defeated at home by Barnet in the F.A. Trophy. After the game, Welling manager Rod Stringer gave his views.

“I was really pleased with the boys.” he said. “The game probably didn’t reflect three-nil if I’m really honest. We can see how good Barnet are as a team. They’re good on the ball and they’ve got so much experience. They’ve come full strength here today which is good. I’d rather be tested.

“Since I’ve been at the club, nearly two weeks, it’s been so hard and this game was really, really playing on my mind because I knew what was going on behind the scenes. It’s public knowledge, not something that we kept as a secret, but we had seven out today cup-tied. We then went and lost another two in the last two games through suspensions and then we had another four that were injured and not able to play. That was thirteen players that we would have wanted to play but for whatever reason they couldn’t.”

He continued “I felt we played really well and then we conceded the (first) one, I felt against the run of play. They’ve played a great ball in the lanes and we haven’t got tight enough and to be fair, he’s got himself on a one on one and he’s just signed from Oxford United. He’s been playing in the first team and he showed he knows where the back of the net is.”

Having gone in one down, Welling started the second half purposefully “We came out second half and really had a go.” continued Stringer. “The players ran their socks off for ninety plus minutes. Yesterday, I had three coming in at deadline time, twelve o’clock, and not one of them got done so I was really disappointed that we couldn’t get a little more firepower in.”

Stringer would like to continue to re-shape his squad but knows of the difficulties when taking over at a club in mid-season. He said “Every club has contracted players but we seem to have too many here and it’s not going to be easy. I know that Howard (Prosser) will back me and give me every chance to do what we can. He’s one of the owners of the club and we’ve had this conversation.

“That’s our fourth game now and I’ve seen a helluva lot of these players so I know what we’ve got and where we need to improve. I’ve already brought in one or two. Sonny Fish couldn’t play today. He’d have certainly given them a problem and I thought that Jason Adigun today was absolutely amazing and if the other ones who are coming in can give us that kind of quality we’re going to see some exciting football and hopefully the results will start to come for us.

“We’ve got two coming in from a league two side and a league one side. Both have played at this level and know what it’s about.”

He finished by commenting on the brilliant work by groundsman Jamie Honeyman and his helpers. Stringer said “I want to give a lot of thank yous to the ground-staff as well because we’ve had some horrendous weather and to actually get the game on, and still look at the pitch in that condition, I have to say they need a big well done as well.”

Images courtesy of Dave Budden