We'll just go and do the best we can, says FC Elmstead boss Fabio Rossi

Wednesday 02nd August 2017

FC ELMSTEAD manager Fabio Rossi says he will be satisfied with another midtable finish this season.

Rossi’s side completed their pre-season campaign with a 2-1 home defeat to Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division side Beckenham Town last night.

Pacey striker, Lekan Bakare fired FC Elmstead into an early lead from the penalty spot to score against his former club.

Beckenham Town equalised through a stunning hooked volley into the roof of the net from 22-yards from striker Jamie Humphris, before Richard Atkins tapped in a low cross from Columbian talent Carlos Branco, who started in the heart of defence (giving away the penalty), before impressing down the left-wing.

Rossi takes his side to Gravesend on Friday night to play newly-promoted side Punjab United, who won the Andreas Carter Joma Kent County League Premier Division title at the first attempt at the end of last season.

“It’s going to be a very tough game. They’ve got some good players in their team,” said Rossi.

“We played here two years ago on the opening night when we came in to the League and some of our players looked a little overawed with the crowd.  I don’t think that will happen to them on Friday night.

“We’ll go down there, we’ve got ourselves as fit as we can and we’ll just go and do the best we can.”

FC Elmstead originate from Chislehurst but play their home games in Bromley, hiring Holmesdale’s Oakley Road ground.

Rossi guided the amateur club to an eleventh-place finish in the Southern Counties East Football League First Division and Rossi expects a similar campaign this time around.

“Well a few weeks ago we were looking to end up a little bit higher than that but with the comings and goings of late somewhere in that region will be decent enough for us, I think.,” said Rossi.

“We’re not as big as some of the sides in this division, just due to the fact we haven’t got our own ground, so we have to do what we can.

“I think it’s going to be tighter,” added Rossi, when asked about who he believes will be challenging for promotion this season.

“Glebe (last season’s promoted champions) probably ran away with it last two years, they probably should’ve won it two year ago.  There’s been a few changes. Ben Young’s left Sutton Athletic, but I still think they’ll be strong.  I think K Sports will be right up there amongst it.  I think Holmesdale, I feel a bit for Ian Varley, he’s had the heart ripped out of his side so he’s had to quickly bed that down.

“I think it’s going to be much more open than it has been with seven or eight teams chasing that top bit, I think.”

Punjab United  v  FC Elmstead
Southern Counties East Football League First Division
Friday 4th August 2017
Kick Off 7:45pm
At Elite Venue, Dunkirk Close, Gravesend, Kent DA12 5ND