United’s forward thinking

Ramsgate goalkeeper Nick Shaw is beaten by a Sam Adams penalty during Hastings United's 1-0 victory at The Pilot Field on Monday night. Picture courtesy Joe Knight

Ramsgate goalkeeper Nick Shaw is beaten by a Sam Adams penalty during Hastings United's 1-0 victory at The Pilot Field on Monday night. Picture courtesy Joe Knight

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Nigel Kane is focusing on making Hastings United a more potent attacking force.

United manager Kane says he is looking outside the football club for fresh talent, but also wants to improve the players currently in situ.

He said: “We’ve got to score more goals and we’re on the lookout for somebody that can put the ball in the back of the net.

“The top scorer from Brighton University, Devante Davis, was training with us on Wednesday and we’ve got another lad travelling down.

“We’ll keep one eye on finding new players, but I’m not really a fan of signing players just for the sake of it. Part of my job and the coaches’ job is trying to make our players better. We’ll be practising finishing in every training session to try and improve the players that we’ve got.”

Kane was pleased with the defensive aspect of United’s performance in the 1-0 win at home to Ramsgate on Monday night - their first clean sheet at The Pilot Field in Ryman Division One South all season.

“I thought Razor (Sean Ray) was back to his best and Harvey Hanifan looked very assured,” he continued. “He gives us a bit of pace in defence which we’ve lacked since the start of the season.

“I thought we looked much more like a unit on Monday than we had previously. That’s the sort of game that earlier in the season we were either losing or drawing.

“It was a much-needed win. It helps to put a bit of a gap between us and the teams below us and it boosts everybody’s confidence a bit. It was a big step in the right direction.”

United are now 16th in the table with 15 matches to go.

“We’re only seven points off ninth,” Kane went on. “We’ve still got a lot to play for as far as I’m concerned. We’ve got a lot of winnable home games remaining between now and the end of the season, and the guys are playing for their places next season.”

The U’s are now without a fixture until next weekend as their scheduled opponents tomorrow (Saturday), Corinthian-Casuals, are on a week-long trip to Brazil that climaxes with a friendly at the São Paulo home of the giants they helped inspire, Corinthians-Paulista.

United will train tomorrow and next week, but Kane believes the break from action is no bad thing.

Left-back Tunde Dixon has come on board and the club has a new fully qualified physio, Aleks Graff, who may even don the boots having played professionally in Poland.