Whyteleafe FC

Gaffer's Chat with Harry Hudson

Welcome to this week’s Gaffer’s Chat. Leafe boss, Harry Hudson looks back to last Saturday’s defeat at home to Cray and ahead to this week’s short trip to Sevenoaks, all with his usual refreshing honesty. If you fancy an afternoon out cheering on your favourite football team, Sevenoaks have a very nice ground. Plus, it’s not very far …

Harry, tough day at the office, so to speak, on Saturday with the 4-nil beating by Cray Valley? Weird game and result though because I thought that apart from a 20-minute period in the second half it was a pretty even game? Your thoughts? We were incredibly poor second half and I can only apologise to the fans for our capitulation after the break. The first half was even, as you say, and I thought we had some good opportunities, as did they, but after the break we were massively second best and Cray deserved their win.

We talked about Cray earlier in the season and I remember you said that just because Cray had come up from the SCEFL they wouldn’t be anyone’s whipping boys?
No, they are an organised side and I am not surprised they are doing well this season.

You’ll be trying to redress the balance when we face them again next week (Tuesday, February 11 – 7.45pm) at their place, no doubt? Most certainly we will be out for revenge and to get some pride back after Saturday.

There were a few positives from the game though, Harry? The front three – Sobowale, Gondoh and Andrews – were a joy to watch at times with their interaction which must bode well and give you and Calum real optimism for the rest of the season? Yes we caused them issues in the first half and created some excellent opportunities. We need to get the ball into our forward players as much as possible as they will score goals for us. 

I think it’s only right to look a bit more closely at the fixtures of late. You have had some real so-called six pointers? The last few weeks has seen you play every team directly around us in the league. Doesn’t get more intense than that, does it? Yeah, it has been tough, and we have Sevenoaks and Cray again in the next ten days, so it doesn’t get any easier, but we have to revel in the pressure and perform – unlike Saturday!

Renedie Masumpu made a welcome return last Saturday. He’s been in Germany playing I believe? He made a good impression in the first half of the season, is he back with us now? Yes, Renedie was on trial at Hamburg SV in Germany and then at QPR before he suffered an injury to his ankle. I would imagine – and hope – that he will be available to us for the remaining part of the season.

The games come thick and fast and don’t seem to get any easier. Sevenoaks away on Saturday. Thoughts on that one? The best surface to play football on at this level so that it is always enjoyable to go down there. They are a good side who are pushing for a play-off space as well and they have strengthened recently so it will be a challenge.

Injuries and suspensions! There I said it…both Nathan Campbell and the dynamo that is Mannie Mensah limped off against Cray. What are their prospects for Saturday? Also, I think Helge, Bentley and Peter Wedgeworth are now suspended for a few games? A lot of games in the latter’s case …Yeah, we are going to be very stretched on Saturday with suspensions and injuries, but we have a good enough squad to come through the game with three points! That’s the plan and we’ll be trying our very best.

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