Time to stand up and be counted, says Common boss

Little Common player-manager Russell Eldridge is expecting a reaction from his team. Picture courtesy Catherine Gurney
Little Common player-manager Russell Eldridge is expecting a reaction from his team. Picture courtesy Catherine Gurney

Russell Eldridge says his Little Common footballers must ‘stand up and be counted’ as they seek a swift response to last weekend’s surprise setback.

The Commoners were knocked off the top of Macron Store Southern Combination Football League Division One after losing 4-1 at home to Selsey - their first home league loss all season.

Common will make the long and always testing trip to Midhurst & Easebourne tomorrow (Saturday) needing a victory to keep pace with the other clubs battling it out at the summit.

“Every game’s vital and even more so this week in terms of getting ourselves back on it,” said Common player-manager Eldridge. “We’ve got to stand up and be counted, and we’ve got to show a bit about us.

“We’ve had a good season so far as a whole, but we don’t want to throw away the good work we’ve done. We’ve got ourselves into a strong position, and we’ve got to look at ourselves and think ‘how much do we want it’?”

Now in second place, Common - the division’s leading scorers with 72 goals in 25 league games - are three points behind new leaders Saltdean United and the top five are covered by just six points.

Common have more than twice as many points as 12th-placed Midhurst and were 5-1 winners in October’s reverse fixture, but will be taking nothing for granted in tomorrow’s return match.

“It’s a difficult place to go and we’ve got to pick ourselves back up again,” continued Eldridge. “We’ll be looking for a response and a reaction, and the boys know that.

“If you have a good performance, the win tends to come with it. But sometimes it’s about getting the result and finding a way to win.”

Eldridge added that he’s trying to bring one or two players in to freshen things up and provide extra competition for places over the final nine matches.

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