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Mildenhall Town manager Phil Weavers pleased with reaction of forwards in big away win at Walsham-le-Willows



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Phil Weavers has high hopes for his Mildenhall Town front players this term.

He felt they were a little below par during Saturday’s season-opening 0-0 draw at home to Norwich United, but on Tuesday evening at Walsham-le-Willows they showed exactly why their manager holds them in such high esteem.

After an opening half an hour which felt like both sides were sizing each other up, Mildenhall’s forward-thinking quartet sprung into life.

Phil Weavers (far right) was pleased with the response to Saturday's 0-0 home draw. Picture: Mecha Morton
Phil Weavers (far right) was pleased with the response to Saturday's 0-0 home draw. Picture: Mecha Morton

All of Weavers’ front three – George Bugg, Kieran Twinn and Tanner Call – were on target in the 5-1 victory at the Moorish Sports Ground, as was Tommy Robinson, who in his role as the attacking midfielder is encouraged to get himself into dangerous areas and wreak havoc whenever the opportunities arise. And that was without Ryan Gibbs, who is set for a short spell on the sidelines with an ankle injury.

“I’m an honest bloke – on Saturday I felt our back seven were near-on faultless. We were brilliant defensively as a team but I felt the front four didn’t fire,” said Weavers, who was picking up his first three Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division points since being appointed permanent Mildenhall boss in May.

“I spoke to them before the game and explained that they needed to improve from that.

Kieran Twinn celebrates the first of his two goals against his former club. Picture: Mark Westley
Kieran Twinn celebrates the first of his two goals against his former club. Picture: Mark Westley

“I understand we’re new as a team and it takes time to gel as a group, but we don’t have the luxury of time if we want to do well in the league this season.

“We need to get off to a good start so I challenged them to improve from Saturday and as you saw, the result and the performance from them speaks for itself.”

While those that scored the goals will get the limelight, Weavers was equally impressed with how the foundations were laid.

Much of the first half was a scrappy affair with both teams struggling to string anything cohesive together. Yet Weavers had prepared his charges for such an eventuality and was pleased with how they responded.

George Bugg scored his first competitive goal for Mildenhall from the penalty spot. Picture: Mecha Morton
George Bugg scored his first competitive goal for Mildenhall from the penalty spot. Picture: Mecha Morton

He added: “We’ve spoken about the league as a whole and there are no easy games.

“The first half an hour in every game is going to be a battle, we know that. We’ve been working on a way of playing that allows us to get through that first half an hour that will allow us to achieve things that will let us express ourselves later in the game.

“Today it came off, Saturday it didn’t.

“From one to 15 they were faultless today. What is most important to me is the graft and they worked their backsides off from minute one and earned everything they got.

Young substitute Kushinga Benyu almost added a sixth goal late on. Picture: Mecha Morton
Young substitute Kushinga Benyu almost added a sixth goal late on. Picture: Mecha Morton

“It’s a great result because Walsham are no mugs. They’ll do well in this league and take plenty of points off other teams so it’s a great result.”

The focus for Weavers and his players now switches to the Emirates FA Cup and an extra preliminary round tie at Hadleigh United on Saturday (3pm).

Weavers said: “We had a good run here last year, beating a Step 3 side in Royston.

“As a player the FA Cup is the best competition to play in domestically.

“I’ve always felt at this level the FA Cup is for the club, the Vase is more for the lads because you’ve got a genuine chance of going far.

“It’s a massive game for the club, Stevie Holder (Hadleigh manager) is someone I know well and it’s not going to be easy, but we’ll head over there and look forward to a good game.”