“We have some massive games coming up, but we are absolutely feeling confident and looking forward to them, there are so many leaders in the squad, so no one really lets anyone slack or drop there levels.”
Coming into this season, no one really knew what to think about Radcliffe FC. They were coming off the back of a disappointing season by everyone’s standards, narrowly avoiding relegation, yet had the promise of a exciting, new manager in the form of Jon Macken.
The former Premier League Striker quickly got to work during the summer, bringing in some of the divisions most experienced, trustworthy players. Arguably no other man in the squad fits those two adjectives better than Player of the Month Winner, Scott Metcalfe.
Scott, through years of experience at this level with the likes of Warrington Town, Droylsden, Ossett Albion, and plenty others non-league clubs, knows more than anyone just how important the next few weeks are for the club. With promotion in reach, there is plenty of pressure on the squad to perform every week, but Metcalfe says the team are not really fazed:
“I feel the whole team have been in great form this month all working hard for each other, we have some massive games coming up, but we are absolutely feeling confident and looking forward to them, there are so many leaders in the squad, so no one really lets anyone slack or drop there levels. The new lads that the club brought in plus the lads from last season made a good solid squad.”
It would be easy for the coaching staff to stick with the players that are tried and tested, but instead have opted for a mixture of players like Scott, and younger more unseasoned players. The combination of the old-heads and the unpredictability of the younger group have made the Boro a difficult team to prepare for, the midfielder agrees.
He said: “The younger lads have done great and in my opinion shown no nerves at all. They are always looking to play the ball along the ground and not just smack it up field like a lot of young or inexperienced players do at this level.”
13 Assists this season for the club with 4 goals so far for Metcalfe
Scott himself has found his best form of the season right when the team needs him most, he has bagged four goals in the last six games, taking his tally to seven for the campaign to go along with his 13 assists.
Despite his fantastic offensive output, for the first half of the season, Macken was forced to play the natural left-midfielder at left-back as well as in midfield at times. It’s a good thing Scott is up for any the challenge if it’s to stay on the pitch:
“Getting a few goals this season is more of a personal bonus, and something I'll look to continue for the rest of the season, but yeah I’ve played a few different positions this season, even though I’ve always been on the left, I don’t mind what position I play really. I’m more than happy to play anywhere if it’s to help the team win.”
One of many stats the might just might just pop out at you if you read it on a page is Scott’s genuinely impressive 15 yellow cards this season alone. To get oneself to that number can only mean that you won’t back out of any challenge: “Yeah I guess I have a few cards this season” Scott said laughing.
Even though he has been playing out of his “preferred” position for extended periods this year, he has still managed to rack up a staggering number of assists this season. Most of these coming from classic dead-ball situations, of which the left-footer has a prowess for.
He said: “Yeah we have managed to score a lot of goals from set pieces this season. All I’m told to do is put it in an area. The rest of the lads do the hard part to be honest”
With Scott’s first season at Radcliffe drawing to a close, it’s safe to say that no matter what happens now, it has been a successful debut campaign for Metcalfe personally, but goal focussed as he is, I am sure the midfielder’s mind is on one thing, and that is to get Radcliffe FC to the next level.
Updated 17:53 - 4 May 2019 by Daniel Pryer