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Folkestone Invicta boss Neil Cugley says his new-look squad is taking time to settle

By Andrew Gidley

Neil Cugley

Neil Cugley

Neil Cugley is demanding more consistency from his Folkestone Invicta side ahead of derbies against Ramsgate and Hythe Town in the space of three days over the bank holiday weekend.

Folkestone travel to Southwood on Saturday, before hosting the first Shepway derby of the new Ryman League, Division 1 South season, at the Fullicks Stadium on Monday – with club officials hoping to attract a four-figure gate.

New signing Steve Harper scored his first goal for Invicta in the 2-1 defeat at Herne Bay on Tuesday night, after the 1-0 home loss to Walton Casuals at the weekend.

Goals from Joe Nelder and Jordan Casey had put Bay 2-0 up before Harper’s 87th-minute effort ensured a nervy finale at Winch’s Field.

Cugley said: “We are missing leaders on the pitch – people like Darren Smith (now at Leatherhead) and Roland Edge. Their knowledge of the game is great, they are good players and communicators.”

“We were too patchy for my liking though, inconsistent all over the park, especially in midfield. Sometimes we look like a top side but poor at other times."

“We have made six changes (from the team that lost in the play-off semi-final at Maidstone in April) and haven’t quite settled yet. I want to see us be a bit more fluent.”

Edge returns this weekend following his wedding and honeymoon but Harper is unavailable, while striker Richard Atkins has left the club ahead of his round-the-world adventure.


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