Whyteleafe FC

Gaffer's Chat 25/09/2020

Welcome to another bright and breezy edition of GAFFER’S CHAT with Leafe boss, Harry Hudson, who has a real spring in his step following two great wins this week. Time to catch up with the boss.

Harry, what a great league opener last Saturday down on the sunny Kent coast and our visit to Herne Bay. I know in last week’s Gaffer’s Chat, you said it would be a real test. As it turned out we won at a canter, didn’t we?

​Yes, it was certainly a lot easier than we expected but that comes from us being clinical and putting the game to bed early. I thought Tyler made a huge save at 0-0 which, if they had scored, makes the game a totally different proposition. I was very pleased with the whole squad on Saturday and we enjoyed the day. 

What particularly pleased you about the performance aside that is from the result?

The boys followed the game plan perfectly - our defensive structure negated Herne Bay's biggest threats and gave us a platform to expose them quickly in transitions. We showed a high level of organisation coupled with exciting and dangerous attacking football - we cannot ask for much more! Finally, the group showed their togetherness and it was clear for everyone to see the morale of the group is very strong at the moment.

Some Leafe regulars reckon that the performance against Herne Bay may have been the best they’ve seen from a Leafe side for many a year. You’ll be delighted to hear that?

​I would have to agree and that is very pleasing to hear, despite so many changes from last season, we seem to be improving. We cannot believe we have won anything though as that was only one game and we need to ensure consistency in our performances. 

Turning our attention to Tuesday evening and our third Emirates FA Cup match of the season, our first qualifying round clash with Binfield Town of the Hellenic Premier. You like this competition, right? You enjoy some enviable luck in it!

What was refreshing about Binfield was that even though they are a level below us in the pyramid they came to play football and I think they impressed you greatly with their attitude and overall performance?

​They caused us many problems and I can see why they have been so successful recently. They constantly put us under pressure and made us defend. In truth, the scoreline could have been 2-0 to them on Tuesday but we got the goals at important times and had that extra bit of quality to finish our opportunities. 

Do they have the player with the longest ever throw-in known to man, do you think? The guy was hitting the far post with them! Actually, I think it only right that we give the bloke some credit I reckon. Take a bow, George Short. Amazing, right, Harry?

​His throw was a real threat throughout the game and to be honest, I would rather defend corners than long throws. We must have defended 30+ balls into our area on Tuesday and kept a clean sheet so that bodes well for us.

Joking aside Binfield gave the Leafe defence an aerial assault. You must be very pleased with the way they responded and kept an all-important clean sheet?

​100 per cent. We were asked questions from Binfield constantly and our back four were excellent.

Jamie McGeoghegan has carried on his fine form of last season and has already developed a good partnership with fellow centre-back, the returning, Antone Douglas?

​Both have been fantastic and are currently giving us a platform to build upon. We demand a lot from our Centre Backs - not only to defend and repel the opposition but also start our attacks and I couldn’t be happier with the partnership we have. 

I think it is about the right time to resurrect our little weekly focus on a particular player. Can you tell us more about our young left-back, Jeremie Milambo?

​Yes, Jeremie is a Bradford lad who was signed at Bradford City from an early age until last season. He is a very cultured and technically gifted footballer who delivers a wicked ball into the box.

We wave bye-bye to another of our young stars this week. I believe Lesley Duru is about to sign a professional contract with Fulham, Harry?

​Lesley is just awaiting his medical to sign at Fulham FC. Lesley has been an excellent player for us in the last 2 seasons and we wish him all the best in the future.

Finally, we are back in Pitching In Isthmian South East action this Saturday (September 26 – 3pm) when we welcome Chichester City to Church Road. Another team you rate highly?

​I think Chichester were excellent last season and they are a team I am very much looking forward to playing as we respect their approach. They deserved a place in the playoffs last season and I am sure they will be looking to achieve at least the same position again this season.  

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