Published: 06:00, 27 August 2021
Folkestone Invicta boss Neil Cugley has demanded more from teenage striker Tyler Sterling if he wants to be a part of things.
Cugley left Sterling out at the weekend after being less than impressed with the player’s attitude in training last week, calling on the youngster to work harder.
Sterling came through the club’s under-18 side and Cugley rates him highly but the experienced manager knows that talent alone won’t be enough.
The Invicta boss said: “I hope he responds because he is a quality player. The potential is there, it is up to him.
"You can’t make them run or try hard and it can be frustrating sometimes, when someone is not putting the effort into it when people travel a long way.
“We have lads travelling a long way to training and they are the ones who were unhappy last Tuesday.”
Cugley has helped many young players progress, including forward Johan ter Horst, who clinched a three-year deal with Hull City after impressing as a teenager at Folkestone.
The manager added: “It is there, it is up to him, but the work-rate has to be there to make it happen. We have seen these players before and it is up to what they want. There is a lot to being a professional footballer, you have to be very dedicated, you must have that.”
Folkestone have won both of their opening Isthmian Premier games but there has been a marked different in their performances.
They beat Worthing 3-1 on the opening weekend but Cugley was left disappointed that they didn’t get close to those levels on Saturday in a 1-0 win at Corinthian Casuals.
David Smith scored the winner on 17 minutes.
“I am pleased we won and kept a clean sheet but it was a bit disappointing with how we played,” he admitted.
“If you drop your standards like that you are not going to beat the better teams. We just never got going and I think the players were disappointed with what they did individually.
“It was such a good result and performance against Worthing (the week before) it was never maybe going to get to that high standard but I was disappointed to see it drop quite a lot from that.”
Enfield Town visit this Saturday, a team who have also won their first two games.
The weekend visitors have been boosted by the return of striker Muhammadu Faal. He rejoined the club having previously scored 24 goals in 25 games, form that earned him a move to Bolton in January 2020. He made two appearances for Wanderers and spent last season on loan at Barnet before being released.
Cugley said: “They have been a big club in the past and are trying to get back up there and it will be a good test for us.
“If we play like we did against Worthing we haven’t got anyone to fear but if we play like we did on Saturday it will be a difficult afternoon.”
Aaron Simpson is expected to be back training this week with a view to being involved.