Home   Gravesend   Sport   Article

Ebbsfleet United midfielder Jack Powell on life away from the pitch as a father-of-two

By Steve Tervet

Any young footballer looking for guidance when it comes to staying grounded just as your career is taking off should have a word with Jack Powell.

The 23-year-old scored both goals as Ebbsfleet won 2-1 at Maidstone on Tuesday night but his post-derby celebrations were low-key to say the least.

Powell's partner Shana gave birth to their second son, Jaxon, last Friday so his day off was spent changing nappies rather than nursing a hangover. Having become a dad aged just 18, the midfielder knows all too well that every choice he makes has consequences for others.

Jack Powell with his partner Shana and sons Shay and Jaxon
Jack Powell with his partner Shana and sons Shay and Jaxon

"I felt I was quite mature at a young age but it's a totally different maturity," Powell said. "You've got people relying on you, who you're responsible for, so your mind doesn't get a second to rest.

"My first son, Shay, is five now. I was still at West Ham when I had him but I was never really into going out and partying as youngsters are. I enjoy myself on the odd occasion but I was always a homely person so that didn't change too much. It's just the responsibility you've got when you have children.

"Football is mentally tough. There are always times when you're looking for that little bit extra. You dig deep and find something to inspire you and I've got two unbelievable reasons to do that.

"I use them as motivation as well as my missus. I want to provide for them, as all fathers do, and football seems to be the way I might be able to do that."

The early signs are good. Powell, released by Millwall in summer 2016, has since scored 22 goals in 80 appearances for Ebbsfleet and already had a promotion on his CV. He's putting points on the board, not just food on his family's table.

Powell's willingness to listen to constructive criticism is one of his great strengths, with a natural ability to score free-kicks also pretty high on that list. Fleet have stepped up a level this season and so has Powell.

"I feel more versatile," he said. "I've never played out wide, which I've done this year and it's about getting your bearings and your positioning. I feel like I'm an intelligent footballer so it's just what the games requires.

"There's been times when I've played really close to Danny Kedwell and almost been a second striker, so that has different things you need to do. I think I'm improving by the day.

Jack Powell has just scored the winner for Ebbsfleet at Maidstone Picture: Andy Payton
Jack Powell has just scored the winner for Ebbsfleet at Maidstone Picture: Andy Payton

"The manager (Daryl McMahon) was a central midfield player and we've got Andy Drury, Dean Rance and Jack Payne, all players that have played loads of games at this level and higher. I've got some good people around me to learn from and I can't ask for much more.

"In training, the intensity's high and that's how you learn. You train hard and play with good players."

The learning curve has bumps along the way, of course. Powell was dragged off at half-time on New Year's Day after Fleet had, to quote McMahon, "melted" against Bromley and conceded three goals in 20 minutes. They played better against Chester on Saturday but lacked a cutting edge and lost 1-0 before putting things right at the Gallagher Stadium.

"Since I've been here, we've never lost three on the bounce so we needed to bounce back," he said. "We showed good grit and determination. Sometimes we get disappointed if we think that's the reason we haven't picked up a result and that might have been the case recently.

"All of us midfield players feel we could do both sides of the game. If it looks like we're being over-run, we're disappointed but I think we showed we can mix it on Tuesday."

Join the debate...
Comments |

Don't have an account? Please Register first!

The KM Group does not moderate comments. Please click here for our house rules.

People who post abusive comments about other users or those featured in articles will be banned.

Thank you. Your comment has been received and will appear on the site shortly.


Terms of Comments
We do not actively moderate, monitor or edit contributions to the reader comments but we may intervene and take such action as we think necessary, please click here for our house rules. If you have any concerns over the contents on our site, please either register those concerns using the report abuse button, contact us here, email multimediadesk@thekmgroup.co.uk or call 01634 227989.

Follow us

Like Us on Facebook

Most popular

Kent Travel News

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More