London Lions B manager Sam Marchant said his side turned in their most convincing performance of the season as they made it four wins to four to stay joint-top of the Division One table.
MGBSFL Division One:
Finchley City 1 Maccabi London Lions B 1
Sunday, 16 October, 2016
Reflecting back on a performance which saw two goals from Michael Kenley, coupled with strikes from Ben Winters, Joshua Bloom, Benji Weinberger and Dom Feldman secure a 6-1 win over Finchley City FC, he said: “The performance pleased me a lot. We had a slow start in the first 5/10 minutes and nearly conceded, but it was a wake-up call and the boys reacted superbly.
“We started playing the football we know we are capable of, creating chance after chance, whilst also restricting their attack. We knew we would be in for a tougher game this week against a highly motivated and spirited side, but we really showed ourselves well on the pitch. I still firmly believe we have more to give as a side and can play better than we did today, but the performance was certainly a step in the right direction.
“The lads have now set a new benchmark for the level of performance and they know what is required of them. I would say it was our most convincing performance of the season so far.”
Delighted with his side’s start to the season, he said: “Of course winning four from four is the perfect start we dreamed of. We take each game as it comes and make sure we are focused on the task ahead each weekend. As I said, I do feel our side has a lot more to give. We are young, averaging 20/21 years old and the boys can continue to improve as footballers both individually and together. We have a lovely spirit in the dressing room and we know that although we are capable, nothing ever comes easy. We work extremely hard midweek training and have to make sure we are always at the top of our levels if we are to continue competing.”
Equally as happy with the squad at his disposal, he said: “We made some very tidy additions over the summer and the squad is strong in talent and depth. At this level, squads need to be larger in order to compete and we hope that this season our squad is able to provide that. This strength and depth was highlighted today – we had Joshua Bloom starting as a lone striker after his hat-trick last week, and Michael Kenley on the bench. With these two terrific strikers, we can rotate or play them together. Kenley came on midway through the first half and proved a point by scoring with his first touch and then again shortly after. The competition for places all over the back is fantastic to have and it pushes the lads to play that bit better if they want to keep their place.
“It would be unfair to pick out certain names in regards to key players, everyone across the park has their own job to do whether it be defending or scoring the goals and it only works well when everyone is doing their job correctly.”
And as to whether his side can challenge, if not win the title, he added: “The end of the season is a long way away and we take each week as it comes. Each week provides a different challenge for us and if we complete each challenge each week, we should be around the top of the table come the business end of the season.
“We have started very well, our result have shown that – we believe we can challenge for promotion, but we take nothing whatsoever for granted. Of course we would love to get promoted and win the title, and in order to achieve big, we must dream big. But, as I said, it is far away from now and the focus goes week on week, not month by month or year on year.”
Moshe Fehler scored Finchley’s consolation, with manager Joel Holder saying: “The overall performance wasn’t good enough, at the moment we’re lacking consistency.
“Last week against Faithfold, we really took the game to them, but unfortunately we didn’t turn up today. There were a lot of unforced errors and I think we gave Lions B too much respect. The scoreline is not a true reflection on how the game went, but at the end of the day the better team won.”
The defeat for Finchley was their second of the season, to go with their two victories from their first four games of the season. Holder said: “I think it’s important to note that we have had arguably the hardest run of fixtures in the league, we’ve played two teams who will be fighting for the title at the end of the season.
“The overall feeling so far is OK, but we need to believe that we can compete against what is ostensibly better opposition. I think if the team become more consistent, our confidence will increase and we will have a good campaign this season. It’s still early days and there another 16 games to go, so we know if we put a run together we can still achieve something special.”