NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Plenty of positives to take from Felixstowe & Walton United defeat, says assistant Ely City boss

Felixstowe & Walton United's Stefano Mallardo grapples with Ely City’s Tom Williams. Photo: Stan Bas

Felixstowe & Walton United's Stefano Mallardo grapples with Ely City’s Tom Williams. Photo: Stan Baston - Credit: Archant

Assistant manager Martin Grey says Ely City’s first half performance in their 5-1 defeat to Felixstowe & Walton United proved that they can compete with the division’s top sides.

The Robins shocked the league leaders by taking a 1-0 lead into the break thanks to Alex Theobald’s seventh-minute strike, but the Seasiders stormed back in the second half to claim a 5-1 win – their 14th victory of the season.

“We did our homework on them and went there with a game plan and in the first half that showed,” Grey said.

“We wanted to stop them playing and after taking the lead we had a few good chances so we were very pleased about how the half went at half time.

“In the second half we knew they’d come out at us, especially with a crowd of 600 behind them, and we wanted to weather the storm but before we knew it we were 2-1 down due to a couple of individual errors.

“They just got on top and I think we were a little bit naïve in the second half. They took control but the score line definitely flattered them.

“It showed that we can compete with teams that are miles ahead of everyone else in the league and we’ll take plenty of positives from it.”

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And Grey will hope Ely can use those positives to beat one of the club’s oldest rivals on Friday night – Newmarket Town.

The Robins will entertain an in-form Jockeys sides that moved into second in the standings thanks to a 4-0 win over Histon on Saturday, but Grey says his side have enough quality and experience to upset the odds and take all three points at the Ellgia Stadium.

“We know plenty about them and, like last weekend, we will go into the game with a game plan,” he said.

“Most people will expect them to come here and beat us but it was close when we played them last season so we’ll go into the game with no fear and hopefully we will see a big crowd.”