FOOTBALL: Belief is back for Bourne Town
Boss Jimmy McDonnell has urged Bourne Town’s free-scoring youngsters to “keep doing the right things”.
George Couzens claimed a hat-trick for the second successive week as the Wakes extended their unbeaten run to five games with a 6-1 win at Woodford United last Saturday.
Max Cooper, Craig Rook and young substitute Ben Moss were also on target in the ChromaSport & Trophies United Counties League Division One game.
The Wakes - who make the trip to Irchester United this weekend - have scored a total of 18 goals in the last three Saturday fixtures.
McDonnell said: “My highlight last weekend was bringing on Ben Moss for his debut and seeing him score.
“Coming in from the under-18s and reserves, he turns up for every training session.
You get out what you put in and now it’s enjoyable for the lads because they are winning again.
“We’ve seen the difference from a shy 16-year-old in pre-season to a quite confident young man.
“We put him on the pitch with about 25 minutes to go and he had a couple of half-chances before he tucked one away.
“That’s the message here that young lads will get opportunities and we’re trying to do things the right way.
“We haven’t got budgets like other clubs where I can go out and sign an experienced centre-half or a striker in his mid-20s who will score 40 goals.
“If all the clubs in the UCL paid nothing, a lot of those lads would still play football for their local club.
“We have a lot of youngsters who will make mistakes and I’ve got no problem with that if they learn and support each other.
“At the moment we’ve got to be happy because we are on a good run of form.
“However, at other times this season it’s been hard, to be honest.
“But I always felt we were not far off and then all of a sudden we’ve shored up at the back and stopped losing games by the odd goal.
“We were being told ‘you’re the best footballing side we’ve seen’ but we were losing 2-1 or 3-1.
“We had three draws on the bounce and the lads got a little bit of belief back.
“We needed to get the balance right, we asked for more commitment in training and the results have improved.
“Previously we had always looked like scoring but we had a problem keeping them out at the other end.
“You get out what you put in and now it’s enjoyable for the lads because they are winning again.
“The biggest difference is confidence because this is the same group of players.
“Tom Cardall has come back and, although he would admit he’s not the best footballer in the squad, he gives us 100 per cent in terms of graft.
“I think George Couzens has got all the ability in the world to play at whatever level he wants to go to.
“He’s a Bourne lad coming out of Norwich City’s academy and it’s taken him a while to understand what we need.
“For example, closing down the full-back at our level is just as important as scoring goals. Everyone has bought into that work ethic.
“We have real competition for places as Zak Munton has served a three-match ban, Andrew Moss is pushing hard for a place and Jack Corby has recovered from a head injury.
“We’ve beaten Irchester earlier in the season but we know that good teams put together back-to-back results.
“Things can change quickly so we have to make sure we keep doing the right things. Saturday is another winnable game for us.”