Fleet skipper Jack King returned to his old club last night and was at the heart of a sterling defensive performance that returned a clean sheet and passage through to the next round of the Emirates FA Cup.
But the 34-year-old former Woking man insisted the game with Notts County must wait, with his side facing three crucial Vanarama National League matches in the interim period.
“Win or lose, we have to go into the next game with the right attitude,” King told BBC Radio Kent’s Charles Webster. “You can’t think we’ve won here so we’re going to go into Saturday and steamroller Sutton. You always have to prepare right in this league. If you don’t you’re going to get rolled over and we found that with a lot of the games this year.
“We’ve slightly been off it and we’ve been punished for it so we know we’ve got to be on it. But we’re fully confident we can go there and get the result we want. We started the season with six back-to-back defeats which is never ideal. We’ve given ourselves a mountain to climb and we’re playing catch-up but let’s see where the next few weeks takes us.
“You can see the form around the league is a bit up and down from a lot of clubs. You look at Halifax who have been fairly consistent and they find themselves at the top of the league so that’s what we need to do, we’ve got to follow up a win with another win and then another win.”
King, part of a three-man defensive unit alongside Marvel Ekpiteta and Tyler Cordner, foiled everything Woking could muster on Tuesday night and having shut the Cards out in open play on Saturday as well, he’s hoping that is a platform to carry his side forward.
“I think the group of lads, we all back ourselves,” he said. “We are where we are for a reason but you’ve only got to look around the squad and the players that were left out today and the injuries, etc, to know the quality we’ve got in there. We’re fully confident we can get ourselves out of it. If we weren’t then we don’t want those players in the dressing room. The [Woking] pitch has probably suited us a bit better, it’s a lovely surface, we were confident and we got the win and I’m glad we’ve done it.”
It was also the first victory under Kevin Watson and King’s seeing the fresh shoots of recovery already.
“When any new manager comes in, there are a lot of different ideas,” he said. “We’re set up slightly different, we’ve got different ways of playing, different ways of defending, so it’s going to take a bit of time to fully gel but you can see there’s some positive signs there in just the short time he’s been here.
“We’re probably playing slightly more football, a bit deeper which at times when it doesn’t come off it can hurt us, but we’ve got some good players in there. And we’re fully confident that the methods that Kev’s bringing in, we can facilitate.
“There were some times in the game where we weren’t at our best but it’s nice to probably not play your best but finally get a result. There’s been times when we’ve deserved to win or at least take something out of the game and we’ve not. Things have gone against us for one reason or another but the lads stuck in there, we showed great character tonight and although they had a bit of an onslaught at us second-half, we didn’t really ever feel in too much trouble.”
King still has plenty of friends at his former club where he tasted promotion but it’s Fleet who will face Notts County instead – and it’s a winnable tie, says the skipper.
“I had a good season [with Woking],” he said. “I really enjoyed my time and we ended up winning the league. I always had a good relationship with the fans so it’s always nice to come back to a club you’ve got fond memories of. I’ve got a lot of friends here still. So it’s always more pleasing when you do get that win.
“[Notts County] is a winnable tie. It could have been a lot worse, it could have been better, but we fancy ourselves against anyone. We dust ourselves off, we’ve got some important league games in the meantime, so that [FA Cup] focus goes out the window. But certainly we’re pleased to be at home and when the time comes, we’ll be fully confident that we can get another win.”