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Maidstone United Rob Swaine defender likely to leave if National League offer comes in

By Craig Tucker

Maidstone defender Rob Swaine is hoping to stay in the National League next season.

Swaine is finishing with a flourish after putting together a run of games and feels his form shows he should have been playing regularly.

The big centre-half believes United want him to sign a new deal but he intends to look at his options following relegation.

Maidstone United defender Rob Swaine Picture: Andy Jones
Maidstone United defender Rob Swaine Picture: Andy Jones

Swaine said: "From a selfish point of view, even the games we've lost I think I've done quite well in.

"It's tough getting a relegation on the CV but I haven't featured as much as I'd have liked.

"It's not really worked out how I wanted it to. I came to play and my playing time until the last five or six games has been quite limited.

"I think I've played really well and I know I am good enough to play in the Conference.

"If I'm honest with you I'd love to stay in the Conference but obviously I work a lot as well so it all depends.

"I think Maidstone want me to stay so I'll have a chat with them.

"In an ideal world I'd stay in the Conference but if nothing's there then I'm open to offers."

Swaine was troubled by a calf injury after joining Maidstone at the end of October.

It returned at Stockport in the FA Trophy, aggravated by a change of boots, and ruled him out of the next couple of games.

But, as far as he's concerned, his absence from the team has been down to selection rather than injuries.

Swaine said: "When I signed for Maidstone I was trying to get fit and I was running on a treadmill and the calf went.

Rob Swaine's Maidstone debut at Ebbsfleet Picture: Andy Jones
Rob Swaine's Maidstone debut at Ebbsfleet Picture: Andy Jones

"They kept wanting me to play so I rushed back in for Ebbsfleet and I probably shouldn't have.

"We thought it would be OK on the soft ground but it went again.

"When I played at Stockport away, I changed my boots and I didn't have these little pads inside, we totally forgot to put them in, which is why it slightly went again, but since then it's been absolutely fine.

"When John and Hakan came in, they didn't play me.

"I played one game in front of them, against Orient, and I know we lost but I think I played well and then I didn't get a look-in for a while so it was a bit funny.

"Obviously they've been playing me the last five or six so I think they probably realise they maybe should have played me but football's about opinions.

"I'm my own worst critic and I personally think I should have been playing the whole time but it was up to them."

Swaine helped Maidstone beat his former club Bromley in the Kent Senior Cup final on Tuesday night.

The 31-year-old will be giving his medal away to a Stones fan.

He said: "It will be nice for one of the young lads to have it - that's what I always do.

"I've won a lot of medals in the past and always give them to young supporters because it makes their day and we are appreciative of them coming."

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