09:00AM, Friday 14 February 2020
Flackwell Heath boss Marcus Richardson took matters into his own hands against Virginia Water on Saturday, with the manager playing in the game’s final five minutes in search for a winner.
Dan Bailey’s 64th minute header had fired Flackwell back level after Casey Bocarro’s early finish to put the Heathens on track for a hard-fought draw.
But as the match was reaching its conclusion, Richardson substituted himself on for Ben Vicos and nearly grabbed all three points for his side.
“I brought myself on to try and win us the game. I wanted to try and keep up that flawless run we were on,” said Richardson.
“When Dan scored, we were very much on top of the game so I decided to come on with around eight minutes or so to go. I could’ve scored in that time and I hit the crossbar.
“Put it this way, I was glad I didn’t score for my team's sake because I would’ve hammered them in the changing room.
“I don’t think my team should have to rely on me and I’m not saying I’m going to make a big difference. But I feel like I’ve just got a bit of knowhow and understanding of the game compared to my youngsters. Sometimes you’re the general off the pitch, but sometimes you need to be the general on the pitch.”
The game concluded as a draw and extended Flackwell’s streak to three games unbeaten after victories over Ardley United and Bishop’s Cleeve.
Their recent form has seen them climb to ninth place in the Hellenic Premier Division, but Richardson knows his side can do better if they can just maintain the consistency.
“I couldn’t be more positive than I am with the squad I’ve got. They’re a very good squad but I just feel they’re playing a little bit below where they should be in terms of where we are in the league,” added Richardson.
“We’ve lost games this season that only the big man upstairs can tell you how we’ve lost them.
“My squad is a bit naïve at times, but I feel positive that we’re heading in the right direction. It’s just finding that consistency of my team and I think once I find that, we could go to another level.”
Flackwell host Burnham at WIlks Park on Tuesday. Kick-off is at 7.45pm.
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