Thursday 19th August 2004
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Ford happy to be joint top - but performances could be better

MARTIN FORD, manager of Go Travel Kent League side VCD Athletic, admitted his side haven't played as well as they could in their opening two league games to the season, writes Stephen McCartney.

They currently sit second place in the table behind Hythe Town, and are the only sides in the Kent League with a 100% record.

However, Saturday's 3-2 win over Erith Town was followed by a 2-1 win over landlords Lordswood on Wednesday evening.

Lordswood started the game full of confidence after Saturday's 5-2 win at much fancied Thamesmead Town, and in the third minute Andy Skinner's long throw was flicked on by Sam Colyer inside the area but went straight at the Vickers goalkeeper.

Andy Doerr then went on a mazy run into the VCD penalty area and his cross shot flashed across  the six-yard box beating everyone including Scott Bucklen sliding in on the far post.

However, VCD took the lead in the 14th minute when Paul McCarthy received the ball just inside the penalty area and shot past former Gravesend & Northfleet youngster Jake Slade.

With Ford's side in control, McCarthy went close again from 20-yards .

Lordswood, however, equalised in the 32nd minute when Sean Hetterley made progress from his own half and passed to Doerr on the right wing.

After running into the penalty area, his cross from the by-line was met by Bucklen, who stabbed home his this goal of the season.

Lordswood's Neil Crust cleared a Mark Greatorex shot off the line two minutes later.

Lordswood started the second half on top and were unfortunate not to score in the 64th minute when Bucklen latched onto Mike Cunningham's ball, turned the goalkeeper, but the stopper managed to steal the ball from under the striker's feet.

VCD clinched the victory in the 61st minute when a free kick found Michael Adock on the back post and he duly scored from six yards.

Speaking about his winning start to the season, Ford admitted: "To be quiet honest, we haven't played very well in the first two games.

"We are still in the process of seeing our best starting eleven, so to win our first two league games is very pleasing."

VCD Athletic renew rivalry with neighbours Sevenoaks Town on Saturday - a side they used to lock horns with in the Kent County League, and Ford is looking forward to a tough match.

He added: "We played down in Sevenoaks last year and they will be similar to Lordswood and Erith Town.

"We have to make sure we take our chances.  

"They have improved from last year, with one season in the Kent League, and we are expecting a tough game at Greatness Park."

Ford will be aiming for an FA Cup victory at home to Godalming & Guildford the following weekend to boost funds at the club.

"From our point of view we are looking to consolidate our good start and pick up three points before we enter the cup competitions, and look to get some money in the account from the FA Cup and Vase.

"All the games will be tough, we will be up there all season, and will give it our best shot."

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