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Welling manager Steve King says Chelmsford win is not a play-off marker

By Matthew Panting

Welling boss Steve King insists their Good Friday win over Chelmsford does not set down a marker for the play-offs.

Two first-half goals for Bradley Goldberg gave the Wings maximum points and means they are almost certain to finish in the top three in National Leaue South.

The two teams could yet meet again in the play-offs at Park View Road but King says you can’t read too much into that result.

Welling boss Steve King. Picture: Keith Gillard (8909079)
Welling boss Steve King. Picture: Keith Gillard (8909079)

“Third place ends up playing the winners of fourth and seventh,” said King. “Chelmsford for me are going to get fourth place so it will be the winners of their game. There’s a possibly that it could happen again.

“We didn’t really throw down a marker. First half we did, if we’d gone on and won three or four then that would have thrown a proper marker down. But we didn’t throw a marker down for me.

“They were much better in the second half but they’ll go away thinking if they’d played like they did in the second half in the first then it might have been different.

“It was not a complete performance by us by any stretch.”

Welling finish their league campaign at relegation-threatened East Thurrock on Easter Monday before hosting Hampton next weekend. They trail second-placed Woking by two points but King insisted that his immediate focus is to guarantee third place.

“Can we get third? That’s all that was said to them, not second, not anything else,” said King. “If you get third you get a home leg in the semi-final and that’s all you can ask for.

“Our home form is unbelievable. We’re one point off Torquay (who have the best home record in the division). We’ve got a better chance at home than we have away.

“When I look at Woking’s fixtures they haven’t won in six games, they’ve taken three points out of 18. If you do that then the gap is going to close as long as teams around you win and we’ve kept winning.

“Woking are a good side but they’ve hit a bit of bad form at this time. We’ve got form going the other way.

Danny Mills heads over against Chelmsford. Picture: Keith Gillard (8909067)
Danny Mills heads over against Chelmsford. Picture: Keith Gillard (8909067)

“They’re still favourites to get second place, they could win at Dulwich and then beat Gloucester at home.

“We’ll just keep doing what we’re doing. We can only keep winning our games and see where that gets us.

“We want to cement third. We still haven’t cemented that yet. We need another win and then we can’t control what happens at Dulwich against Woking on Monday.”

King was thrilled with his team’s first-half display against Chelmsford but disappointed that they lost their way in the second half against the 10-man visitors.

“I wasn’t happy with the second half and I let them know that,” said King. “I was disappointed with our second-half performance.

“We’re two points off second place so how can you be critical of them?

“We knew we could get in behind them. We went with that game plan and Bradley Goldberg could have had a hat-trick in the first half alone.”

Welling's Richard Orlu gets to the ball first against Chelmsford. Picture: Keith Gillard (8909074)
Welling's Richard Orlu gets to the ball first against Chelmsford. Picture: Keith Gillard (8909074)

Chelmsford boss Rod Stringer felt the red card was the wrong decision but King had the opposite view

“It was a total no-brainer,” said the Wings boss. “He has pulled the guy back in the box.

“The referee let things go for both sides. Their centre forward should have been booked a lot earlier – how many times did he dive? It was ridiculous, which is sad really because you don’t want to see that in the game.”

Welling travel to East Thurrock on Monday, the hosts knowing that they will be relegated if they fail to win.

Defender Josh Hill, who couldn’t even make the bench on Friday, will start the game as King looks to shuffle his pack.

“It’s not going to be the same side on Monday, we’ll change it around,” he confirmed. “Josh will come straight in on Monday.

“We’ll rotate the squad. Take Thierry Audel and Richard Orlu out and put Anthony Acheampong and Josh Hill in and it’s just as strong.”

The Wings boss also revealed that midfielder Jack Jebb is on course to feature in the final game of the season against Hampton after a long-term injury.

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