Ford glad to see the hard work pay off

Banbury United manager Mike Ford
Banbury United manager Mike Ford

Banbury United boss Mike Ford knows there is no substitute for hard work and he saw that pay off at Gosport Borough.

But the Puritans boss admitted his players needed a good old fashioned kick up the backside to get their season back on track.

As a management team, we also agreed that we’d not been working the players hard enough and leaving it to them too much to make decisions

Puritans boss Mike Ford

An Emirates FA Cup exit and three Evo-Stik Southern League defeats on the spin had stalled his side’s excellent start to the season.

But a 4-0 victory at Gosport provided welcome relief for Ford who said: “We asked the players what they thought are our identity was as a team and they said ‘hard work’ and that’s something we’ve not been doing enough of recently.

“As a management team, we also agreed that we’d not been working the players hard enough and leaving it to them too much to make decisions. Sometimes, as in every day life at work, you have to tell players straight.

“We told them that it is all about now and not what we did two months ago. But they responded well to my criticism on Tuesday and those who played have put themselves in the frame for Saturday.

“Going down on the coach in the back of my mind I knew that Gosport would win at some stage this season and I didn’t want that to be against us!

“I remember coming to Banbury with Oxford City without a win in 13 games and winning 2-0. Billy Jeffrey told me afterwards that he had warned his players we would win sometime, so I’ve been on both sides of that situation.

“The three early goals settled us on Tuesday but some of our decision making was poor and we allowed Gosport to have too much of the ball before halftime.”

Ford was relieved to see the fourth goal go in and delighted that it came from Conor McDonagh.

He added: “I was delighted to see Conor McDonagh get the fourth goal, his performance deserved it.”