Fleet skipper Dave Winfield returns to his former club Aldershot Town aiming to fire Fleet into the play-off semi-finals. Winfield, who as a 20-year-old played for the Shots against the Fleet in that epic FA Trophy semi-final a decade ago, goes back to his former employers for a second time this season.
“We’re chuffed to bits to be in there and we’ll prepare correctly and try and achieve a little bit of magic,” Winfield said. “The game we played in January was the first time I’ve been back to Aldershot since I left so to get the draw there was great but now to go back in a play-off is something else.
“We all know they enjoy playing football. They go through the thirds and they try and break the lines which we’re going to be very conscious of but we did do that up their place earlier on in the season. We’re confident we can go there with a game plan and as I’ve said, you take our team spirit up there and you work as hard as you can and you see if you can get a result and that’s really what we’ve done so far.”
Winfield was booked in Fleet’s 1-1 draw at Torquay after a tangle with Elliott Romain and saw his centre-back partner Kenny Clark concede a penalty but the result was enough.
“Kenny’s in there and he’s held his hand up and apologised for the penalty. But it’s nothing, it’s gone. He’s been immense all season. This is a fantastic achievement for everyone here and for the club. The boys have picked up a bit of form at the right time and we’ve stuck on in there. It’s all about your form and rolling from game to game and not looking too far ahead. That’s what we’ve done and with the team spirit we seem to be able to grind out the results and fortunately sometimes when you pick up a bit of form, things may roll for you and we’ve snuck on in there.”
Team spirit was something the Fleet skipper homed in on and says that, along with his colleagues’ focus on one game at a time, has been vital to their run over the past three months.
“We’ve got a fantastic unit,” said Winfield. “The team spirit’s one of the best I’ve been involved in and you need that. You have to have that to go on a run. It’s no fluke, 14 or 15 games, and you have to have it within yourselves. I think we’ve got it here, we’ve got a great bunch of lads and a fantastic setup as a football club. The boys have relished the challenge of every game and we’ve gone and picked up some fantastic results.
“Internally we always had the goal to finish Top 10 and that would have been a huge success for the football club this year. Games roll into games and we had a busy schedule and our form just continued. That’s really how it was. We never really looked any further forward.”