Published: 06:00, 19 March 2020
Maidstone fans got their first look at on-loan Bournemouth defender Charlie Seaman before National League action was halted.
Seaman, who joined the Stones on transfer deadline day, played the last 17 minutes at Eastbourne on Saturday, having recovered from a torn hamstring.
The former West Ham schoolboy spent the first half of the season on loan at Eastleigh but was injured in the final training session before deadline day.
Maidstone took him anyway, hopeful they’d get games out of him, and the full-back was a welcome addition to the squad.
The Coronavirus pandemic has put his comeback on hold, at least until April 3, but Seaman is glad to be over his injury.
He said: “It was good to be back out on the pitch. It’s not that long but it felt like forever.
“I trained here on Thursday and Friday and the boys are really nice.
“It’s been easy to get on with them, so that makes it 10 times easier.
“From what I’ve seen the boys are obviously good players. It’s a good club, so I’m happy to get going.”
Seaman, a second-year pro at Dean Court, made a surprise loan move to Scottish club Dundee United last season.
He didn’t play his best football, despite the Tangerines finishing second in the Championship, but it was a useful experience.
Eastleigh gave him another taste of men’s football and he’s out to make the most of his time at the Gallagher and boost his first-team chances at Bournemouth.
“I’d rather be playing men’s football than be in the 21s at this moment in time because I want to try and progress my career as quick as possible,” said Seaman.
“Coming here, learning different ways to play and playing with different players and managers, it’s always going to help.
“I played three or four games for Weymouth but my first proper introduction to men’s football was up in Scotland.
“It was quite unexpected. I got a call at 10 o’clock on a Wednesday saying you’re going to Scotland tomorrow.
"I wanted to go out on loan but me and my agent were talking and we couldn’t really find anywhere and then that came up.
“I don’t think it was a good time for my performances but for learning the game and living on my own, living in a completely different place and being away from my family, it was a good experience.
“Football-wise it wasn’t too good personally but you live and learn.
"Eastleigh was good and by coming here I can show the gaffer at Bournemouth what I can do, as well as showing Hakan (Hayrettin) what I can do.
“I’m just going to try and play as well as I can.
“If I can do that, it will help me here and at my parent club.
“Obviously Maidstone will report back to Bournemouth and it goes from there.
“There are opportunities there. One of the boys has made his debut and signed a five-year deal.”
With the Premier League suspended, Bournemouth sit in the bottom three, but Seaman expects them to stay up under Eddie Howe.
He said: “He’s a great gaffer. You can see from how Bournemouth have done over the last five or six years.
“They’re not doing the best at the moment but with the players they’ve got, they’ll be fine.”