Published: 06:00, 15 October 2020
By Joe Harbert
Ashford United manager Tommy Warrilow admits his side’s inconsistent start to the season stems from the fact that they are currently playing as a ‘one-half team’.
With two wins from their opening six games in all competitions, United have also picked up just four points from a possible 12 in Isthmian South East following their 3-0 home defeat to East Grinstead on Saturday.
Yet Warrilow believes it is only small details that are preventing his team from showing the form which got them to within touching distance of the summit in each of the last two seasons.
“We were the only side in it on Saturday during the first half - we got in good areas and created some half-decent chances, but we didn’t make that pressure count,” he said.
“Then, in the second half, we were pretty non-existent if I’m honest, and I just didn’t see that coming after what happened earlier.
“But that’s our bad habit at the moment - we seem to be a one-half team.
“It’s been the same story when you think that we were really good in both first halves against Phoenix and Ramsgate, but then not during the Sittingbourne match - we were nowhere near it until the second half and by then it was too late.
“So that sort of sums up our season, with the Whitehawk game being very good all round a few weeks back, but then missing points in three of our games since, so it’s consistency and those fine margins that we need to find.
“As I’ve said before, there’s no easy game in this league so that’s why when we are playing well we have to make it count, because every team, no matter which side you play, will have a spell when they’re on top, and at the moment that’s coming back to bite us.
“That makes it frustrating because we’re not a million miles away, but that’s what football is all about. I have to make sure I can get the blend right to get to the bottom of why it’s happening, and we will, even though I think it’s an accumulation of just small things.
“But it’s important to remember that we’re only four games in, and that it’s where you are around January time that counts by making sure you’re in that leading pack.”
Speaking about this week’s trip to play Hythe at Reachfields in the FA Trophy, Warrilow added: “It’s going to be a really tough, local derby with a great atmosphere that will probably be a sell-out.
“Watty (Steve Watt) came in during difficult circumstances last year, but they finished really strongly and have picked that up this season and gone again.
“They’ve got some unbelievable players over there, some of which have played for me in the past.
“I want to see a solid 90-minute performance that gets the feeling around the place back to where it should be.
“We signed Luke Leppard from Three Bridges last week and he started on Saturday, and he showed energy and tenacity which was something we really needed.”