Jerry’s thoughts ahead of the Dorking game

Good afternoon and welcome back to Twerton Park for this cracking game against the league leaders Dorking Wanderers. My welcome extends to Marc, his staff, players and supporters today. Marc has become a good friend in football over the last few seasons and I am not surprised to see Dorking doing well this season, as he has recruited a very strong squad that is full of quality.

Our form here since early December has been really good so I am hoping we can put in another strong performance and maybe lady luck will turn up for us at some point.

Unfortunately we will be without Ben Seymour today as he damaged his ankle ligaments last Saturday and is receiving treatment back at Exeter City. We again have been dealt with some bad luck regarding injuries, with up to seven first team players missing at one time, resulting in us never really having a consistent starting eleven on the field from game to game.

Saying all that our performance levels have actually been very good and last Saturday v Maidstone was another good example of this.

We went with a clear game plan which was working very well on 40 minutes having silenced a very big crowd in attendance. The disappointing thing was we conceded from a set piece just before half-time. We went on to dominate the second half and give a very good side a real scare. Even though we were hit with a sucker punch second goal we soon reacted and scored a very well taken goal from Elliot Frear. The last ten minutes we had them camped in but we couldn’t get the equaliser we deserved.

Today’s game will be extremely challenging, Dorking have a clear style but we think we can impose ourselves upon the game in our way and get a positive result.

The NLS is the strongest I have seen it with clubs having very healthy budgets and bigger squads along with transfer fees being paid club to club for quality players. The squad we currently have if all fit is as good as any in the league which is backed up by the majority of teams we have played recently. We all know it’s about winning games which we have certainly done on a regular basis finishing 5th and joint 3rd in the last two seasons. Last season didn’t count for anything in so many ways ending as null and void with only 13 games played. When criticism comes it means we have raised the bar and expectation is then a major factor.

When I first came to this post we could hardly get 600 gates at TP now it’s a regular 1100. The playing style and club philosophy has been put in place. We have developed and traded really well,l selling five players amounting to well over £70k in player sales with further sell on’s a realistic option as some of them move on in the EFL.

Some really successful loans with players now playing for their parent clubs at EFL level which I am extremely happy and proud of being part of their development.

We all continue to work hard and believe in what has been proven is a good model for our football club. Yes, we want to be better placed in the league but we don’t have a divine right to win games every week. We all want the same thing success for Bath City FC, it’s so important we drive, strive and support each other in the right way.

I want to thank everyone who donated to the charity run we completed the other Sunday. Myself and Mark are really proud we managed to complete such a tough and gruelling run in such a good time. The money will go to such a worthy charity, JDRF which you all know is close to my heart, whilst a smaller part is for Bath City Radio to help with paying for equipment. A bucket collection will be present at today’s game. Thanks once again it means a lot.

Finally today we will be holding a minutes applause for George Bolt before kick off today. I got to know George really well over the past few years having visited him in the Bristol Children’s Hospital and the family home. George unfortunately died recently from a rare form of leukaemia aged only 16. I attended his funeral last Friday which was a celebration of his short life. The service was very well attended showing how popular he was to so many. He was a warrior, so cheery and positive until the end. A true inspiration, taken way too early. Jane and Phil his Mum and Dad will be in attendance today. Let’s pay our respects at this extremely sad and difficult time for them.

Enjoy today’s game.