Published: 06:00, 13 January 2021
Adam Mekki delivered a captain’s performance after taking the armband for Ebbsfleet on Tuesday night.
The Fleet midfielder scored the winner to sink Concord at Stonebridge Road and post their first win in six National League South matches.
Given the extra responsibility of captaincy with Lee Martin and Josh Payne both ruled out by injury, Mekki responded by netting his first goal of the campaign.
“It was an outstanding game from him,” reflected Ebbsfleet boss Dennis Kutrieb. “We’ve had a lot of communication in the last few weeks and I know his strengths, I know him as a player.
“It was a big leadership (role) and I was very impressed by him – that’s what I’ve wanted to see from him the whole season. I wanted to see that in the first 12 games and I would say he has set his standards now.
“That’s where he should be, we want that week in, week out. He is able to deliver it but he needs time and confidence, as well as the vision from me. He was outstanding and I was very happy.”
Fleet ended a run of 470 minutes without a league goal when Rakish Bingham equalised for them against Concord.
It’s a run that lasted more than five games and stretched back to November – but the Fleet boss was not worried by the barren spell in front of goal.
“It was not a really big issue for me,” he added. “We’ve had chances but we’ve missed them, like Reece Grant's one on one against Dorking.
“For my own expectations we had to score three or four goals against Concord, not just two. But we have to stay calm and be humble.
“In the bigger picture I am not happy to only score twice because we could and should score more but we have to start slowly and be happy with what we got.
“We deserved the three points and that’s the most important thing – if we score two or five goals it doesn’t matter.
“We have to improve week by week. Of course, I am happy when we score goals because that’s the best thing you can get in football.”
Kutrieb confirmed that injured players Josh Payne, Jake Goodman, Lee Martin and Charlie Rowan could all return to action within the next week but Greg Cundle and Ben Frempah are likely to be out for a couple of weeks with injuries picked up in training.
The midweek win lifted the Fleet to within a point of the play-off places in National League South but the boss was keen not to get carried away.
“When you lose against Dorking 2-0 it’s not the end of the world and when you win 2-1 against Concord it’s not on top of the world,” he stated.
“We need to find the right balance so we know exactly where we are.
“When we expect to win and we get the win, we can celebrate it but we haven’t achieved anything yet – we only get three points.
“There are many games left and you need to get a run, get three points week in, week out, and then you can start talking about bigger things and bigger pictures.
“But at the moment every one of us in the club is aware of it and knows exactly where we are and what we need, and when we get a few wins then we can talk about other things.”