Richard Bland boost for Wokingham & Emmbrook FCBy Adam Lee
January 15, 2009
Wokingham & Emmbrook FC manager Wayne Wanklyn has welcomed striker Richard Bland back to the club and believes his return will be a massive boost for the squad.
The Satsumas are now without a win in three games in the Hellenic Division 1 East, and the manager insists that the return of Bland could see his side recapture the form that has seen them lead the way for much of the season.
Bland started the season at Wokingham, scoring seven goals in the opening five games, but left to play for Combined Counties Premier League high-flyers Camberley Town.
But after making just five starts for the Krooner Park club, in which time he scored three goals, it appears that personal reasons saw him return ‘home’ to Cantley Park.
“I’m delighted to have him back,” said Wanklyn.
“He will be a big boost.
“He gives us different options up front because he can get in behind defences and has natural speed.
“The last six or eight games we’ve had to work very hard for our goals, now we have that other option of a ball behind the defence for him.
“He enjoyed his time with us and has some good friends here – at this level of football it is very important to be relaxed and I’m more than happy to have him back.
“He’s tried it for himself and come back, but that’s not to say he’s not capable of playing at a higher level.”
Although Wanklyn is pleased to have Bland back in his squad, he still insists that the striker is just one of a number of young players in the squad bristling with talent.
With defender Jack Broome committing himself for the majority of the remainder of the season, Wanklyn believes his team is poised for bigger and better things.
This was highlighted after Hellenic Premier side Ash United made an approach to sign his son, Shaun Wanklyn, only for the defender to rebuff their advances and stay put.
“We’ve got lots of young players and we have had interest for a lot of players and when you’re young and doing well that’s going to happen – there’s not an awful lot you can do about that at the moment.
“It is why we need to get the Cantley situation sorted and hopefully these are exciting times for the club.
“There’s eight or nine players in the starting line up each week that are 21 and under and they will all get better.
“It’s really up to them how far they go.
“I had a seven-day approach from Ash United for Shaun Wanklyn just before Christmas.
“He spoke to them but his own view is that Ash are only one league above us, not doing particularly well and next year we could well be in the same division.”
For the time being, Wokingham must concentrate on beating Bisley Sports at Cantley Park in the league on Saturday (kick off 2pm) and the manager has urged his players to put in a performance for the full 90 minutes.
But, after three weeks without a game, this may be easier said than done.
“It’s frustrating because the lads just want to be playing,” Wanklyn said.
“It’s just unfortunate at the moment because it has been so cold.
“I’m not too disappointed with the way we’ve been playing, but we haven’t been doing it over 90 minutes.
“We dominated against Englefield Green, against Newbury we played well for the first half but didn’t come out for the second, and against Binfield it was the opposite.
“It’s about getting more consistency over the 90 minutes.”
Ascot United are themselves in a bit of a slump in form, having lost three of their last four games.
They host Rayners Lane on Saturday (kick off 2.15pm).
Elsewhere, Finchampstead’s postponed local derby with Binfield in the Berks & Bucks Intermediate Cup fourth round has been rescheduled for this Saturday (kick off 1.30pm) at Finch’s Memorial Ground.