Clarke inspires gr-eight victory

PUBLISHED: 11:14 17 September 2009 | UPDATED: 14:27 06 May 2010

Spartan South Midlands Premier Division Tring Athletic 3 Colney Heath 8 SCOTT Lacey hailed substitute Aaron Clarke after the youngster came off the bench to kill off Tring Athletic s challenge with a four-goal salvo. The game was delicately poised at 3-3

Spartan South Midlands Premier Division

Tring Athletic 3 Colney Heath 8

SCOTT Lacey hailed substitute Aaron Clarke after the youngster came off the bench to kill off Tring Athletic's challenge with a four-goal salvo.

The game was delicately poised at 3-3 after Tring had come from behind on three occasions after goals from Jack Coombs, Ian Cooper and Dean Parratt but Clarke's introduction changed the game and boss Lacey was delighted by the performance of his substitute.

"At 3-3 I brought Aaron Clarke on and he scored four goals in about 17 minutes," Lacey told The Herts Advertiser. "He's done well last year and he's got raw pace. What he's got to do is the workmanlike stuff. On Saturday he was the total package and he's a great asset to the club."

Another Cooper goal in the dying minutes sealed a fantastic 8-3 away victory for the Magpies but Lacey is looking for improvements at the back.

"Defensively I wasn't happy," explained the Heath supremo. "We're conceding one type of goal and every one has been the same and it's an issue."

Coombs gave the visitors the lead inside 60 seconds on Saturday and Lacey says it's no more than the midfielder deserves for his early season performances.

"Jack's been outstanding this year. We lost Neil Jordan this summer to an injury and it looks like he's going to have to retire. I thought that was a massive blow but Jack's come in and filled his boots.

"We lost our four best players in pre-season - Ant Muthusamy and Neil Jordan retired, Richie Howard couldn't commit to playing at this level and Nicky Winger - but players have come through and others have taken their chance."

Lacey paid tribute to the players' hard work and says he believes there is nothing stopping them from leading the club to its most successful season.

"We haven't got a huge budget or a massive ground. We're just a village team that's boxing above their weight. What we have got is an exceptional bunch of lads. I've always said you don't need lots of money to win this league, just 16-20 lads that are willing to work extremely hard.

"We're sitting at the top of the league and the club's never had that before. The way we play is all about effort and as soon as that drops off so will the results but there's nothing stopping them being a top three side and winning some cups.

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