Daryl McMahon’s been sitting on a coach for much of April plotting Fleet’s next move in an increasingly extraordinary campaign and, dwelling on his side’s defeat at home to Sutton en route to the north-east, he was determined his squad put in a better showing in their penultimate game of the regular season.
“It’s been a long two days,” the Fleet boss told BBC Radio Kent’s Charles Webster. “We trained at the [Kuflink] Stadium before we left, got up here about 6 o’clock [Monday night] so the boys had a nice day, just relaxing and we had plenty of preparation. We prepared right and I thought the performance showed that: good energy and good quality.
“I said after Saturday that the biggest disappointment for me was the actual performance, not so much the result. And we just said tonight to make sure whatever the score is that we go and put on the [sort of] performance that we’ve done with me in charge for the last three years: passing the football properly, getting on the ball… and I thought the players were outstanding tonight. It was a very good performance.
“We felt we’d score goals tonight. We’ve totally controlled it in the middle of the park with Powell, Jukesy and Rance and you’ve got Coulson, Kedwell and Whitely with good pace and good power and then Weston came on as well. We used the ball well tonight and probably could have scored a few more.”
A few more goals would truly have been an amazing result for the Fleet. As it was, Danny Kedwell provided three of them and McMahon was effusive in his praise for the No.9.
“He’s been outstanding all year for us. I said before the game, I think he’s the best striker in the league in that he plays up there on his own. I know he’s got the lads behind him who join him quickly and stuff like that but he holds the ball up for the team and he was outstanding today.”
The other goalscorers, Jack Powell and Luke Coulson, also landed approval from their manager.
“Jack was brilliant, he hit the post, had a couple of good free-kicks that went close as well,” McMahon said. “The pitch suited him as well tonight, it was slick and flat and he really impressed again tonight. We said at half-time to [Luke Coulson], he had 15 minutes at the start when I didn’t think he started very well and then he won the penalty and went from strength to strength from that. He’s a handful to tie down, he’s hard to play against because he’s so quick and clever. When he’s on song, he’s difficult to play against for anybody at this level.”
Listen to the full interview below.