Newmarket bidding to bounce back
NEWMARKET Town joint manager Kevin Grainger was almost lost for words after seeing his Ridgeons League Premier Division side thrashed 4-0 at home by Hadleigh United in midweek.
After clean sheets in their previous two matches, Newmarket conceded four times against a side who had hitherto struggled to find the back of the net - and it could have been more.
Grainger said: “We played a lot better on Tuesday than we did against Diss in the FA Vase last Saturday when we won 3-0, so it’s crazy!”
Admittedly, Newmarket are having to adjust to life without Andy Eady, the former Bury Town and Mildenhall Town centre back who has been captain of the Jockeys for the past two-and-a-half years.
The veteran Eady has decided to call time on his career due to work commitments, and Grainger admitted he will be a big loss to the club.
You may also want to watch:
“Andy was as close as you will get to a professional player experience-wise. We are missing him as he pulled the back four together.
“Having said that, he had to start somewhere, and other lads now have an opportunity to prove themselves as well.”
- 1 The Suffolk pub serving a gourmet Sunday lunch three days a week
- 2 Caravan owners furious after park suddenly blocks sales of properties
- 3 £1m renovation on Suffolk castle will change the appearance
- 4 Framlingham taxi driver lives double life as Chateau Diaries star
- 5 Ipswich Town fan banned from Portman Road for racially abusing player
- 6 Revealed: The most popular names for babies born in Suffolk in 2020
- 7 Family forced to live in tent after maggots and rats found in home
- 8 'There are a million pundits... it becomes tedious' - Cook on Portsmouth trip
- 9 'I'm very lucky' – Ipswich biker-chef lost arm and hand in A14 crash
- 10 Burst water main floods A14 roundabout and leaves homes without water
Tuesday’s home defeat certainly came as a shock to the system, after Newmarket had made a steady, if unspectacular, start to the season with six points from as many matches.
“We have played three of the top four - Leiston, CRC and Kirkley & Pakefield - and with a new team I am comfortable with that return.
“I was looking for the team to step up from last year and aim for a top-ten finish, but maybe with the changes we have had that will be a tall order and we may have to consolidate in mid-table.”
Grainger, who this season has Neville Nania working alongside him as joint manager, said that only six players remained from last year’s 15-man squad.
Among those to leave were experienced trio Paul Betson, Colin Vowden and Aaron Rutter, who have all joined Kershaw Premier League side Lakenheath.
Several players with United Counties League experience have come in to replace them, and Grainger admitted: “We have had a lot of changes in personnel, and at the moment we have not settled.
“We have had a lot of injuries, holidays and work commitments to contend with, which has been disruptive.”
Grainger will have to pick his team up for today’s visit of Premier Division newcomers Great Yarmouth.
“They have started the season well and it will be a hard game, but we will be looking for a reaction from the players,” added Grainger, whose side face Wisbech Town in the FA Vase second qualifying round a week today.