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Ashford United midfielder Hass Ibrahim relishing more attacking role

By Joe Harbert

Ashford United midfielder Hass Ibrahim says his game has been transformed since joining the club from rivals Hastings in the summer.

The 25-year-old has regularly been deployed as the Nuts & Bolts No.10 this campaign – a position he hasn’t always played in throughout his career.

“I’ve always generally been a defensive midfielder, but Tommy (Warrilow) had a big influence in me coming here because he’s put me in more of an attacking position,” he said.

Ashford's Hass IbrahimPicture: Matt Bristow
Ashford's Hass IbrahimPicture: Matt Bristow

“Somehow I have some attacking qualities that he knew about, so when he told me I would be playing further forward, I bit his hand off at it. Coaches have played me everywhere over the years as an attacker, a No.4, and even at right-back, so it’s made me become a bit of a jack-of-all-trades.

“Personally I think I’m a natural box-to-box player, but in the hole I know I can create goals and work hard for the team, so at the moment it’s probably my favourite position in recent years.”

Ibrahim, who has featured in six of United’s nine matches so far this season, believes he needs to improve his attacking numbers if he is to establish himself as United’s chief creator.

He added: “I don’t tend to keep tabs on my statistics, but individually I need to sort out my goal-scoring form and get more assists too.

“In terms of a target, if I can achieve 10 goals from now until the end of the season, then I would be happy with that.

“As a team we’re all trying to chip in, and we’ve all got our personal targets so if everyone reaches them we know we can have a successful season challenging for the league.

“Tommy’s implemented a situation where if you play well, you’ll keep your shirt and that’s a good attitude so that nobody gets complacent, especially in such a hungry team.”

After starting his career at hometown club Barnet, Ibrahim says that playing in Kent is a completely different challenge to what he faced back home in London.

He said: “With Kent football, you definitely see the physical demands of the game more, for instance winning your first and second balls, getting involved in more tackles and having more communication.

“Some of these traits you wouldn’t see London sides necessarily specialise in. We have a lot of flair and skilful players compared to Kent which probably doesn’t have as much.

“But playing down here has helped me because football’s not just about the nice stuff. You’ve got the ugly side that you need to implement in your game as well which has helped me massively.”

Read more: All the latest sports news in Kent

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