CITY BOSS WANTS TOP 10 FIN­ISH

Kentish Gazette Canterbury & District - - Football - By Josh Ford­ham

Can­ter­bury City man­ager Ben Smith wants at least a top-half fin­ish from his side af­ter the con­vinc­ing vic­tory over Deal Town on Satur­day.

City beat their land­lords 4-1 at the Charles Ground to make it back-to-back wins in the South­ern Coun­ties East League, Premier Di­vi­sion.

Smi th said the team’ s ex­pec­ta­tions have changed from the start of the sea­son and he hopes to use this im­pres­sive per­for­mance as a plat­form for the rest of the cam­paign.

He said: “If you’d have asked me where we’d fin­ish with the enough for City who were 3-0 up by half-time.

Smith said: “I was de­lighted. We have been on a real down­ward spi­ral af­ter bring­ing in a lot of high pro­file play­ers for this league. Re­sults haven’t gone our way.

“We have played bet­ter than that and come away with noth­ing but we took our chances and had de­sire and grit.

“There were spells when we had been good on the foot­ball but the dark arts of the game we didn’t do par­tic­u­larly well and I told them today there were three things I wanted to see from them – pride, pas­sion and to­geth­er­ness.”

There were sev­eral con­tro­ver­sial ref­er­ee­ing de­ci­sions in the match. Smith be­lieved Deal should have been down to 10 men in the first half af­ter one of his play­ers was kicked on the ground.

He was then him­self sent off for kick­ing the dugout af­ter one of his play­ers was booked for div­ing.

Smith said: “If our play­ers run around the ref­eree there he gets sent off. He’s kicked him on the ground. If you raise your hands it’s a straight red. It sur­prised me he stayed on the pitch.

“The FA want to clamp out things like crowd­ing the ref­eree but un­less you do it you don’t get the de­ci­sion. You are in a no-win sit­u­a­tion. For me it is a straight red, there’s no de­bate there.

“He’s booked our lad for div­ing and I didn’t think he dived. I kicked the dugout and he sent me off, which was harsh. Would he rather me scream and shout at him over the de­ci­sion?”

Can­ter­bury host Chatham Town on Satur­day.

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