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Welling United manager Steve Lovell on 4-3 National League South win over Ebbsfleet United

Welling boss Steve Lovell admitted his side’s shoot on sight policy paid off against Ebbsfleet on Tuesday night.

The Wings took plenty of long-range shots during their 4-3 win, most notably the deflected winner by Kristian Campbell in the closing stages.

Dipo Akinyemi hits the post from distance for Welling against Ebbsfleet on Tuesday night. Picture: Keith Gillard
Dipo Akinyemi hits the post from distance for Welling against Ebbsfleet on Tuesday night. Picture: Keith Gillard

Lovell felt Welling had been guilty of trying to score the perfect goal in his first games in charge, and was pleased to see the improvement.

“We had good build-up play but we get to the edge of the box and we wanted to walk it into the net,” explained Lovell.

“You’re never going to score goals (like that) and I want more people in the box. When the ball is on the right with Rhys Murrell-Williamson, I wanted Kristian Campbell in the box as well as Anthony Cook and Dipo Akinyemi, and another midfield player. That’s what we had.

“We had loads of shots, I lost count how many we had. There were some good goals, including the winner from Kristian. He did brilliant, he looked as though he’s played left-midfield all his life but he hasn’t played there before.”

Lovell changed his tactics following the 5-0 thrashing at National League South leaders Dorking Wanderers last weekend.

The Wings ditched his diamond formation for a basic 4-4-2, and keeping it simple paid dividends.

“Sometimes I’ve got to take the blame,” added Lovell. “I asked them to play a certain way and we did it against Dartford. We played the same system against Dorking and it wasn’t the right system to play.

“If we had played this system against Dorking on Saturday we wouldn’t have lost 5-0, without a doubt.

“But it’s a learning curve for me getting to know the players as I don’t know them, I don’t know any of these players apart from Darren Oldaker at Gillingham.

Welling skipper Anthony Cook on the attack against Ebbsfleet. Picture: Keith Gillard
Welling skipper Anthony Cook on the attack against Ebbsfleet. Picture: Keith Gillard

“I’m getting to know them so perhaps because of the way they played against Dartford I’m thinking they can do that against Dorking but they couldn’t because the fitness levels weren’t right and we hadn’t worked enough on the diamond because the diamond takes a lot to work on.

“That’s why I went back to a more basic formation and we’ve got players in those areas that can do it.

“You can tell players so many things but unless you work on them, then it doesn’t happen. Basically, you’ve got to go on the training ground and work on things, explain to them what needs to be done and what their roles and responsibilities are.

“We went about this shape, told them it’s the most basic shape, 4-4-1-1, 4-4-2. All I want you to do is come back in straight lines and defend. When we get the ball, we can hit them on the counter attack down the sides as that’s where they leave the space, and it happened.

“Sometimes it works and you get the just rewards, and that’s what we got.”

Lovell was in discussion with referee Jack Packman at the end of the first half after Fleet keeper Gio Bellagambi escaped with a yellow card after taking out Dipo Akinyemi.

The Welling boss wanted an explanation with the official explaining that he felt a defender would have got back on the cover.

“The referee said it was yellow because there was a defender covering – (he felt) it was a foul but Dipo didn’t have the ball under control,” said Lovell.

“He said to me that he’d look at the video. I will too and most probably I’ll look at it in a different light. But when I saw it live, it looked like a penalty and a sending-off, the keeper has come and taken him out.

“Dipo would have gone and put it in the back of the net. It all depends on where the defender was, if the defender was there or thereabouts then I think the referee has got it right.

“He’s not going to change it but I just wanted an explanation about what he saw, he told me and that’s fair enough.”

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