Tom Bender looking for St Albans City to rediscover their smile

Tom Bender in action for St Albans City against Chelmsford City. Picture: JIM STANDEN

Tom Bender in action for St Albans City against Chelmsford City. Picture: JIM STANDEN - Credit: Archant

Confidence is king in football as it is in life and Tom Bender says getting that back will help St Albans City climb up the National League South table.

Saints remain rooted to the foot of the table but there was enough in the second-half performance in the 1-1 draw with Chelmsford to suggest the good times could return soon enough.

And while the long-serving defender said there hasn't been a crisis meeting between the squad, he is convinced that belief in themselves has been the main reason for this season's woes.

He said: "There have been times where little things haven't gone our way and just like winning is a habit, losing is a habit.

"Some people's confidence can go and that can spread through the team and we need everyone to want the ball."

And Bender, who made his 183rd appearance for the club on Saturday, has taken it on himself to lead the morale committee.

He said: "It's a case of people like me and David Noble keeping everyone upbeat.

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"I'm loud, I'm cheery and I like to mess around in the changing room but I'm not like that at all on the pitch.

"It's just about keeping people's spirits up. We've seen games where we've dominated and then a goal goes against us and heads drop.

"People talk about pressure. It's not pressure, it's a game of football. You can't put yourself under pressure and that's what I try and tell the lads.

"The worse that will happen is we lose a game of football.

"We need to enjoy it and play with freedom. If you make a mistake, then you make a mistake.

"If you do it when you're trying to do the right thing, nobody is going to have a go at you.

"Work hard, try to do the right things in the right areas, and more often than not you'll win games."