Fleetwood’s Pond shows survival instinct

Nathan Pond
Nathan Pond
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Nathan Pond believes Fleetwood Town can turn around their campaign despite the club slipping back into the relegation zone.

Club captain Pond played his first 90 minutes of the season as Town lost 1-0 to Chesterfield on Saturday, a result which put a dent in hopes that Fleetwood were on the road to recovery.

But Pond, who has been present for every one of Fleetwood’s six promotions from the North West Counties League, is keeping the faith and urging others to do the same.

“It’s a strange situation for myself,” he admitted. “I’ve had six or seven promotions, and I’m confident we’ll get out of this and get ourselves at the right end of the table.

“We need to get back to back wins, get some momentum going, get some confidence in the squad.”

For Pond, Saturday marked the end of a long recovery from injury.

He turned his ankle at Oldham on the second weekend of the season and was laid up for nearly two months following complications.

The 30-year-old centre- half admits he’s still not 100 per cent but is ready to play his part in hauling Town out of trouble.

“It felt good,” said Pond of his 90-minute stint against the Spireites.

“I tired towards the end, which was expected. It was my first 90 minutes since pre-season. It was just happy to get that under my belt.

“Now it’s back to the training ground. I’ll be working on individual stuff to continue the recovery and we’ll be working as a team.

“We’ll look at Saturday and see what aspects we can improve on.”

Fleetwood battled hard but lacked real cutting edge as they were undone by Sylvan Ebanks-Blake’s close-range strike.

And with confidence taking a beating from their poor start to the campaign, Pond believes it’s important for Town to sieze the initiative.

“The first goal is vital,” he said. “But it’s the same with most teams at this end of the table. It’s all about confidence.

“We had a couple of chances before they scored. If we do get the first goal it’s a different game.

“We started well, then the tempo dropped. We were superb in the second half but we left ourselves too much to do.

“We need to punish teams and put the ball in the net.”

Manager Steven Pressley has made clear the importance of going on a run – Town have only won back-to-back games once this season.

And Pond knows they should have done more on Saturday to build on their excellent win at Oakwell the previous weekend.

He said: “It was very disappointing. All the lads were disappointed after a good result at Barnsley.

“We had a home game against Chesterfield, a team in and around us in the table, and we need to capitalise on those chances.

“We should have picked up three points on Saturday.”

Ebanks-Blake’s winner came from a lucky break – a cross was deflected on to the bar, the ball then falling perfectly for one of the division’s top poachers to smash home.

“You can talk about luck,” said Pond. “We’ll get one of them this season hopefully.

“It’s one of those things in football – it deflected on to the bar and just dropped to his feet.

“We’re not seeming to get that at the other end, but I’m sure it’ll happen for us this season.”