MacFarland keen to keep morale high

Michael Parsons (in red) in action for Eastwood CFC against Hucknall Rolls Leisure on Saturday. Photo by Anne Shelley.
Michael Parsons (in red) in action for Eastwood CFC against Hucknall Rolls Leisure on Saturday. Photo by Anne Shelley.

Eastwood CFC manager Paul MacFarland says perseverance is key as the new club continues its attempts to make progress on the pitch.

Eleven straight league defeats have left Eastwood bottom of the Central Midlands League South, with only a cup win at Thoresby CW having been registered so far.

But MacFarland believes that despite some initial progress having been stunted in recent weeks, the team is still moving in the right direction.

“We will get there,” he said:

“It’s been a case of two steps forward then one back, in many ways, in that we’re edging forward slowly but hitting setbacks along the way once injuries to key players kick in.

“It looked like we’d turned the corner a few weeks ago with an impressive cup win and a couple of defeats by the odd goal, then we’ve let ourselves down a bit by losing 5-0 twice in a row courtesy of simple defensive mistakes at crucial times.

“We’re working hard to identify the right players we need and although it hasn’t worked out for some, we’re learning all the time.”

A family bereavement has left MacFarland unable to attend training sessions and matches over the last week or so, something he feels has also had a negative effect.

He added: “My assistant John Adams has been left to introduce new players and it’s been more a series of trial matches than training sessions at the moment. Our communication hasn’t been great due to what’s been happening but hopefully things will get back to normal soon.

“We’ve a free weekend this week which could actually be a blessing in the circumstances (the cup tie against Westella has been postponed) and we’ll then look forward to what will be a tough Notts Senior Cup game at home to Radford next Tuesday.”

Players are continuing to come and go from Coronation Park as the right blend is sought that will bring more success on the pitch, and the lack of a consistent team was also cited by MacFarland as being problematic.

He said: “It’s hard to get a settled side, especially when so many of the players are very young as well, but with enough of the right coaching I think we will improve.

“More people are coming in behind the scenes at the club which is a big help and which is needed for a club of this kind of size. The doors remain open to anyone who genuinely wants to help us grow.

“So it may be taking a bit longer than hoped and there are still things broken that need fixing, but it’s early days and we’re identifying all the time where we can improve on and off the pitch.”