No Christmas cheer for United following two heavy defeats

AFTER they wish you the season's greetings friends usually ask, “Did you have a good Christmas?” Cornard United's answer to that: “We lost both holiday matches, losing 10 goals to nil.

AFTER they wish you the season's greetings friends usually ask, “Did you have a good Christmas?”

Cornard United's answer to that: “We lost both holiday matches, losing 10 goals to nil. In the process only three players attended the Christmas party out of 50 signed and issued with club tracksuits and I have paid out a record £1000 in fines for red and yellow cards and its only Christmas.”

I don't know the answer, but I remember a former manager telling me his secret of success - “train them hard and pay them nothing.” Unfortunately, that does not work with the current generation who show about as much enthusiasm for training as they do for the Christmas party. That was the final straw as far as I am concerned and the only reason for me to carry on putting up with such nonsense is the £50,000 I have invested in the club. However, life goes on and we open up a new box of soldiers. You will be hard pushed to recognise many of this week's players. Out of the 50 signed 30 have left and the rest can't be bothered. When they leave I ask them why and they say: “I don't like losing and don't like being a substitute.” I tell them the answer to both is the same, “start playing better or start trying harder.” Unfortunately, with one or two exceptions, that's not an option to the modern youth who don't want anything to do with failure, whether it's their fault or not. So they deal with it by giving up or running away, or as they would say “move on.” Having said that we have about six players and the backroom staff who are made of different stuff and will never give up. As I have said many times in the dressing room: “You see one side of a player when you are winning every week and you see the real side when you are losing regularly.”

We also have some new faces who I have high hopes for to get us out of trouble. Goalkeeper Kevin Holland has joined us from Debenham LC, central defender Kurt Waterfield has signed from Halstead Town, striker Ritchie Meadows made his home debut last week and young Jordan Hutchings has stepped up from Cornard Dynamos and is playing great stuff even in a struggling side. Terry Nippress who played for us seven years ago has returned to the area and was quickly signed up. The Christmas Derby at Melford was a disaster, a 4-0 defeat, and as we licked our wounds we thought “things can only get better” and they did, we lost 6-0 at Diss on the Saturday. Drastic moves had to be made to stop the rot in time for the New Year Derby with high flying Hadleigh. So instead of telephoning the usual squad of 15 players and seeing five call off, we phoned about 40 and it worked. Half still called off but we had 20 players turn up ready to play and the usual latecomers and slackers could not find any kit to wear (that will teach them). The plan was a success. We did not win but we kept a clean sheet and stopped the rot with a 0-0 draw. Hadleigh were kind and said Cornard were the better side. So there was Christmas. Roll on May. Tuesday evening we are at home to FC Clacton in the Ridgeons League Cup and Saturday, Stowmarket.

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