Testimonial evening next Thursday
Nathan Pond says he is raring to go again after recovering from a slight injury ahead of Fleetwood Town’s trip to Dagenham & Redbridge this weekend.
The 28-year-old stalwart defender has had a full week of training since Town were last in action in the 3-1 victory over Accrington Stanley nearly two weeks ago.
“I am fully fit now, I have had a full weeks training and I am just ready for the next game now,” said Pond who had picked up a minor hip injury.
After missing the first four games of the season, which included the Dagenham game for the opening fixture of the new season, Pond forced his way back into the starting line-up and has been a regular feature since then.
Town recorded an impressive 3-1 win to kick off the new Sky Bet League 2 season and Pond is hoping Fleetwood can record the double over their East London opponents this weekend.
“I didn’t play the first game but the lads got a good result so hopefully we can get another three points down there and get a run going.”
Reflecting back on the first half of the season, Pond says he is happy with his personal performances so for this season, but admits he has had to maintain a high level to keep hold of a starting shirt.
“I have been happy really with my performances. There is still room for improvement and I am just going to keep working hard and hopefully get better.
“In this side you have to play well to keep your place, so when you go in there you know that you are going to have someone trying to take your place so you have to keep the standard of your performance up.”
Due to being knocked out of the FA Cup, Fleetwood did not have a scheduled game last weekend and will play their first fixture in two weeks tomorrow against Dagenham.
Fleetwood recorded a 3-1 victory over Accrington, courtesy of goals from strikers Jon Parkin, David Ball, and Daniel Carr, but Pond admits that the game could have been far more comfortable had they not conceded in the last 10 minutes to make the score 2-1.
Alan Goodall also returned to the first team for the first time since April in the victory over Town’s Lancashire rivals and Pond says his fellow defender is proof to the squad that, if you work hard, you can force your way into the squad.
“It was a good victory, we was comfortable at 2-0 and then we conceded another poor goal again.
“That put us under a bit of pressure with five minutes to go, but at 2-0 Accrington didn’t even look like scoring, they wasn’t in the game, but some slack defending put us under pressure and we need to work on it really.
“Goody played well, similar to me, he has been on loan, come back, trained hard and has earned his place in the team.
“That proves that everyone’s got a chance if you work hard in training and have the right attitude then you will get your opportunity.”
As part of Pond’s testimonial year, a Q/A session with chairman Andy Pilley, manager Graham Alexander and Pond himself will be held in the Parkside Suite next Thursday evening.
Pond says he is looking forward to the event, although he admits he is nervous about a few questions he could face – particularly from a familiar face.
“I got a text off Jamie Milligan saying he’s got some funny questions ready, so I’m not looking forward to that part, but other than that, it will be a great event.”
Pond joined the club way back in the Northern Premier League in 2003 and has stepped up to every new challenge Fleetwood have faced on their way to the Football League and he is hoping to achieve another promotion to cap off a memorable personal year.
“Each year I have stepped up. I played back end of last season to get to know what this league was about so when I was coming into it I knew what to expect.
“It’s done me good really and hopefully the team’s going to go up this year and it will be another level of football under my belt.
“Consistency in this league is the key. All the team’s beat each other like you can see and if the lads can put a run of wins, four or five games, together then we will probably towards the top end of the table and in the top three positions.”
The Parkside Suite is open from 7pm on Thursday and there is no admission charge. The Nathan Pond Testimonial brochure will be available for £5.