We are all looking forward to our trip and a good challenge away at Deal Town, a place where traditionally very few teams manage to walk away with all three points at stake, says Punjab United director of football Giannoulis Fakinos

Friday 25th September 2020

PUNJAB UNITED director of football Giannoulis Fakinos says he is pleased with his side’s start to the new season.


The Gravesend-based side are sitting in ninth-place in the Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division table with a 50% record from their opening four league outings.

Deal Town are in fourteenth-place in the table with three points from as many games and were knocked out of The FA Cup in the First Qualifying Round in midweek, losing 4-2 on penalties after a 1-1 draw at Isthmian League South Central Division side Chipstead.

“We are all looking forward to our trip and a good challenge away at Deal Town, a place where traditionally very few teams manage to walk away with all three points at stake,” said Fakinos.

“However, as a team we love competing in such places and earning points from such matches, which has become a priority focus step in our growth journey.”

Punjab United beat their league rivals Bearsead 5-4 on penalties after their FA Vase tie finished all-square at 1-1 at the Elite Venue last weekend.

“We are coming from a fairly dramatic qualification to the next round of The FA Vase against a competitive Bearsted side, where we produced, in my opinion, an average display for our standards,” said Fakinos.

“But we did show the fighting spirit needed to push until the end and equalise in the last minutes.

“But credit goes to the players who showed composure to score all our penalties and of course to out goalkeeper Max Ovenden who maintained his impressive form since the start of the season.”

Punjab United didn’t have a midweek fixture so could reflect on their start to their campaign.

Fakinos said: “After six matches within 20 days, this was our first week without a midweek match and it was a great opportunity for players and staff to reflect on our start but also to focus on recovery and a few specific coaching points we noted from the campaign start.

“For us, it is all about improving both individually and collectively.

“Overall, I can say we are pleased with our start, particularly satisfied with the positive signs that prove we are on the right track building a consistent identity that is converted to performances and good results.

“Growth is in the core of our philosophy, in our case, it has come very fast in the last few years.

“Nevertheless, as a club, we remain humble and we do recognise now that in order to keep achieving sustainable growth, we must keep challenging ourselves and strive to evolve in all areas.

“This pre-season was extremely difficult for many reasons. However, we have once again completed significant developments in our facilities, adding further value to our supporters, players and coaches.

“For the first team we have introduced key performance analysis tools to help with our players’ development and in combination with the arrival of our new first-team coach Mike Tison, we have set in motion and now established, a culture of constant reflection and development inspired by modern professional set-ups.

“As I mentioned, it is a journey though. We must all keep aligned to this mindset and welcome change.  On that note, I have been really impressed by the players’ attitude and can only thank them for their application towards our initiatives, especially in a squad with an abundance of young talented players like ours, constantly searching for ways to improve should become a second nature.”

Deal Town  v  Punjab United
Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division
Saturday 26 September 2020
Kick Off 3:00pm
at The Charles Sports Ground, St Leonards Road, Deal, Kent CT14 9AU