Assistant manager Darren Beale thinks basement boys Kennington are in “a false position” as Faversham prepare to visit them.
Sammy Moore’s promotion-chasing Lilywhites will aim to end a four-match winless streak when they make the short trip to Homelands tomorrow night.
Dan Scorer’s side are at the foot of the Southern Counties East Premier Division with only one win from 14 league matches. But they only played their first home game of the campaign just over a month ago and were edged out 2-1 by Town at Salters Lane in September during a hard-fought game.
“I think it’s a false position for Kennington,” said No.2 Beale.
“I’ve looked at some of their performances and I know quite a few of their players, having worked with them at previous clubs. I know that they have got a good side there.
“When we played them in that last league game, it was tough - it was 2-1 in the end. They were another team that came to us and raised their levels, and they played really well.
“We can’t take them lightly on Friday. It’s going to be another tough game but, hopefully, we’ll have enough to get the three points.”
Victory for Faversham would briefly send them back to the summit - until Saturday at least, with present leaders Glebe then due to visit Rusthall.
Faversham were knocked out of the Kent Senior Trophy, losing 2-0 at home to Lordswood last weekend.
“We’re disappointed,” reflected Beale, with Town without star striker Stefan Payne and midfielder Sam Hasler through bans and defenders Josh Vincent and Ollie Gray due to injury.
“Obviously, we played them in the league in the week and we knew it was going to be a tough game. We started brightly in the first 20 minutes but we didn’t really capitalise.
“We had a couple of chances. There was one chance, adjudged to be offside, where their player made a back-pass and Warren Mfula scored a disallowed goal - we don’t really understand that one!
“But that said, we just weren’t good enough and conceded two sloppy goals.
“They played well on Saturday and deservedly went through to the next round.
“They’re a side that you can’t take for granted but it’s just frustrating for us at the moment. We know, on our day, we’re a match for anybody in the league.
“We can’t quite put our finger on what’s going wrong at the moment but we do need to change that form around.”
The Trophy loss came despite Town fielding two new recruits, including returning playmaker Nathan Wood who impressed at the start of last season for the Lilywhites in Isthmian South East.
“When Sammy and myself were at Leatherhead, Nathan was with us there for that season,” Beale noted. “He’s someone we know quite well.
“He was a very good player back then, even though he was only a youngster. He’s got a good pedigree.”
Former Gillingham youngster Finn O’Mara also played. The 24-year-old defender showed his versatility by starting in midfield.
While Payne is set to return against Kennington, Hasler is set to be suspended for another three matches. He was sent off twice in three days - in a draw at Snodland and a 4-3 loss to Erith Town - and has already accumulated 10 cautions this term.
But Beale said: “You know what you get with Sam.
“There is that fine line at times where players will try to wind him up from the opposition and supporters from the opposition will be getting on to him.
“But I think that’s testament to him because he’s that type of player who can really hurt teams. That’s, obviously, why they try to do it.
“On his day, there’s no better player than Sam Hasler. He’s probably been one of our best players so far this season and he is a great loss, so we can’t wait to have him back.”
Faversham are set to visit promotion-chasing Division 1 team Larkfield & New Hythe in the Third Round of the Challenge Cup on Tuesday.
Beale said: “They were close to getting promoted last season and they’re doing well.
“They are coming thick and fast, and they’re all tough games.
“It certainly won’t be a game that will be considered to be a walkover.”