Defender Conrad Balatoni has settled into life at TUFC well since his move from his previous club, Falkirk. He’s determined to help keep United in the National League this season, and has been frustrated by United’s lack of games in recent weeks.
“We’ve not played in a while because of the weather and also because our match against Leyton Orient was also rearranged for next week,” said Balatoni after training this morning. “It was disappointing not to play because we wanted to get back to winning ways quickly after our last two defeats.”
United head to Kent to take on Maidstone United on Saturday. The Stones haven’t been in the best of form recently, but any match in the National League is a test. Three away matches in a row within seven days can be seen as an obstacle, or an opportunity.
“It’s going to be a hard game, we know that. It’s an astro turf pitch so it is different to what we are used to but we’re looking forward to it, and to getting back out there and getting three points. If we get three wins on the trot who knows where we could be at the end of that week.”
Maidstone’s 3G pitch holds no fear for a player that got used to the surface while playing in Scotland.
“I was at Kilmarnock who have a 3G surface up in Scotland. I was there for a season and then played for Falkirk who also have a 3G pitch, so I’m used to it. I’m grass all the way, but with the revenue those types of surfaces can bring in it can be too much for clubs not to use one sometimes, so I can understand.”
Whether Saturday’s match is full of attractive, flowing football remains to be seen. With what is at stake, chances are it will be a battle of attrition.
“We know that we need points on the board. If we play well and win then great. If we don’t, and still pick up the points then that’s all that matters. I’m sure no-one at the end of the season will mind.
“The lads are looking sharp in training and hopefully we can carry that over into the games. Everyone knows what is needed and is wanting to go in the same direction. No-one wants a relegation on their CV. We’re all in it together.”
The Yellow Army will join United in a long trip to Kent. Their support cannot be undervalued on the day.
“Since I have been here the fans have been great home and away. If they give us their full backing on Saturday then hopefully we can give a performance they can be proud of.”
Maidstone United Vs Torquay United | 10/03/18 | Kick-Off 3pm | For travel and entry prices click here.