During our weekly meeting with Andy Ford, Bill and I congratulated the new management team for producing a performance at Carshalton which was, by all accounts, as good a display by a Maidstone team for some time.
We then looked ahead to the match at Harlow and Andy informed us that it would be difficult to find eleven players to start the game. Such is the unfairness of football that we took a great stride forward at Carshalton only to be struggling to find a team for, probably, the most important match of our season.
We are however a small business and we are already losing a great deal of money each week so we are not prepared to make panic moves into the market. Andy and Steve are building a competitive squad within the budget and we are determined to put the business onto a sound footing. My personal concern was that we would not be good enough to stay in this league but I am convinced that we have enough talent and determination beat the drop.
I had the pleasure of watching Maidstone United under 14s two weeks ago. I must say that not only do they have a number of highly talented players they also, as a team demonstrated levels of discipline that would make any Maidstone supporter proud that they were wearing a Maidstone shirt.
I spoke to them in the dressing room and they were polite and well-mannered and a great credit to their parents and to Alan Swift and Marc Gasson who run the side. They won the game as they have won all but two of their games all season. They did it without any dissent or petulance but by skill, determination and teamwork. With continued good leadership and careful handling these kids will become the future of Maidstone United.
Bill and I went to Dover Athletic FC this week and met with Jim Parmenter, their chairman. He showed us around the stadium and gave us valuable ideas as to how a football club can make extra revenue from activities off the pitch. What was interesting was the fabulous condition of the grass on the pitch. It was explained that the grass surface was in such excellent condition because they hardly ever trained on the pitch and did not have a reserve team, therefore only using the surface once every two weeks. We then asked what other ways improve revenue streams and he told us “beating Gillingham in the FA Cup helps!”