We know what we have to do to get out of this slump as a team, says Bromley captain Jack Holland
BROMLEY defender Jack Holland says losing 1-0 at home to bitter-rivals Sutton United was hard to take.
The Ravens went into the Bank Holiday weekend in second-place in the Vanarama National League table but they suffered a 5-1 defeat to Dagenham & Redbridge at the weekend, before losing to a negative Sutton United side in front of 2,239 fans at Hayes Lane today.
Bromley put in a poor performance during the first half and were made to pay the price as Craig Eastmond lashed in the only goal of the game in the 24th minute.
Paul Doswell’s side then spent the entire second half timewasting with goalkeeper Jamie Butler and right-back Nicky Bailey their main culprits as Bromley slipped down to eighth-place with 11 points in the bag from seven league outings.
“Utterly disappointed, said Bromley’s 25-year-old captain.
“When we start like we did at the beginning of the season, you go out there believing you’re going to win and today, going out there believing we could win and it’s a shame.
“It’s hard to take, especially two losses on the bounce. It’s something that we don’t do but we know we’ve got to come back, get on the training field. Wrexham on Saturday, we don’t look back, we look forward and we prepare ourselves right to get the win on Saturday.”
Bromley were flying when they thrashed relegated Leyton Orient 6-1 at Hayes Lane on 15 August, before beating another relegated side in Hartlepool United, winning that game 2-0 four days later.
“We don’t get too high when we win and we don’t get too low when we lose,” said Holland.
“The club was buzzing when we was winning and I think we had our feet on the ground even then but with the losses we can’t get too low with the losses.
“We know what we have to do to get out of this slump as a team and we have a great team spirit, great coaches. I know that we’re going to come back on Saturday with confidence.”
Holland admitted that his team-mates failed to turn up during a first half that bitter rivals Sutton United dominated.
He said: “The first half, I think we was a bit off it, I will say we was off it!
“They were winning too many balls all over the pitch and they got their goal and it’s always hard, especially today and the way Sutton played, to come back off that. They’re a very solid team. When they got the goal they know they’re shutting up the hatches.
“I thought second half we came out and I thought we were on top. The goal just didn’t come but I did think it was a better performance in the second half but we can’t wait this long to get going.”
Sutton United demonstrated the dark arts of timewasting to close the game up and referee Simon Barrow let them get away with it!
“That could be us not letting the ref’s hear about it,” said Holland.
“I feel they managed the game, people call it cheating but if they get away with it, we’ve got to get on the ref’s, but I feel they were taking the limit of the time they needed but we don’t look for excuses like that.
“We weren’t good enough on the day!”
Bromley started their Vanarama National League campaign with a goal-less draw at home to bogey-side Eastleigh, before coming away from Dover Athletic with a 2-1 win and Macclesfield with a goal-less draw.
Then came those famous wins over Leyton Orient and Hartlepool United and then they knocked Ebbsfleet United out of the Kent Reliance Senior Cup with a 1-0 Second Round win at Stonebridge Road, but the Ravens have crashed back down to earth this long weekend.
“Looking in from outside, I think not many people gave us a chance in these opening seven games,” said Holland, who scored two goals against Leyton Orient.
“But as a team we knew we’re bitterly disappointed with the points we’ve got! We’re very grateful we’ve earnt the points we’ve got but we expected more as a team and that shows what we think we can do as a squad. We know what we’ve got and we’re disappointed we’ve got these points, whereas people were saying maybe we would’ve taken it but we’re disappointed as a squad.”
Manager Neil Smith takes his side to Wrexham on Saturday, a side that have leapfrogged over Bromley in fourth-place on 12 points following their 1-0 win at Boreham Wood today.
“Another tough game. Every game in this league is tough,” said Holland.
“Going away from home, especially after Dagenham & Redbridge away from home, we’re going in there, we’ll work at it in training and we’ll go there and we will not lose that game.
“We’re going out, we will not lose. We’ll batten down the hatches away from home and we’ll come out and we’ll try to nick it there.”
Bromley have been in this position before. Hopes raised, a loss brings it all crashing down and a long run of winless games follows.
George Wakeling was in the crowd today, the manager who was in charge of then Isthmian League Bromley during the 90’s when the club had next to nothing and he kept the club going on limited resources and will always be a legend to the Hayes Lane faithful.
Wakeling had Orpington based Frank Coles as his captain back then. Holland, who hails from West Wickham, is in the same mould, caring passionately about his home-town club.
Holland had this message to the fans, who are feeling bitterly disappointed following Bromley’s first two defeats of a play-off chasing campaign.
“Stick with us! Rome wasn’t built in a day,” he said.
“It’s Bank Holiday, I know it’s very fresh because it’s two games in a space of three days but I’ve been in these situations before at Bromley where we lose a couple of games on the bounce and I know the fans’ are with us 100%, just as we are with them. It’s a long, old season and you haven’t seen the best of us yet!”
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Wrexham v Bromley
Vanarama National League
Saturday 2nd September 2017
Kick Off 3:00pm
at The Racecourse Ground, Mold Road, Wrexham, Wales LL11 2AH