Five Games In
Alan Jessup-Peacock looks back at Concord Rangers’ start to their first ever season at Step 2.
We’re five games into the Skrill South season, and I’ll be totally honest in saying I had no idea as to where Concord Rangers would be sitting at this early point of the season. Obviously I hoped we would be doing well, but I was under no illusions as to how difficult the Skrill Conference South would be for the club.
I’m pleased to say, though, that the Beachboys have made a positive start to the season, and given more than a good account of themselves in some difficult games already. Opening weekend was a great occasion & experience for everybody involved with Concord Rangers as they made their debut in the Skrill Conference South at home to Basingstoke. The visitors were a good side, as all opponents are certain to be at this level, and they provided a very entertaining game on the day. John Easterford made his mark on the Beachboys history books by scoring Concord Rangers first goal at Conference South level, however there wasn’t too much celebration as a late Basingstoke goal ensured that they would get a 2-1 victory.
There wasn’t a long wait before Concord were able to put points on the board though, as the following Monday the Beachboys made the short trip to Chelmsford City. With the game even at halftime with the score at 2-2, it looked to be a fast-paced and competitive second half, and that’s what we got. However, for all the possession, domination and chances that Concord created, the score remained the same at 90 minutes. A point was on the board though, and once again history was being made by this Beachboys side! Of course, for a club playing at this level for the first time, the early part of the season will be full of moments where history is made, a new record is set for the team and moments are created that will live long in the memory of those involved.
So it will be no surprise when I say that another special moment occurred the following Saturday, when Concord made the trip south to face a well fancied Dover side who had won both their previous matches this season. Danny Spendlove was able to score an absolute classic of a goal to give Concord the lead, and although he then went off injured and the lads played with ten men for the last 15-20 minutes, it was the Beachboys who came home with all three points.
Bank Holiday Monday brought Sutton United to Thames Road, and with them former loanee keeper Tom Lovelock. Both him and Concord custodian Jamie Butler were unbeatable in their respective goals and a 0-0 draw was the final result on what was a beautiful day on Concord Island! Things were not so beautiful in Bath City the following Saturday though, as although the weather was spot on, the end result wasn’t. A tough 3-1 loss ensured that Concord Rangers would finish their first 5 games of the season with 5 points.
A solid start to the season, personally I am happy with how the lads have played and how they’ve risen to the challenge that has been put before them. But of course there is still a lot of football left to play, plenty more games will be won or lost, all that I ask for is that the team remains competitive as we have shown we can be. The Conference South journey has begun, it’s been fun so far and I know I am not the only one looking forward to seeing where it takes us over the coming months!
You Are My Concord!