Skipper back and ready to help Welwyn challenge again at the top end of the league

PUBLISHED: 09:21 07 September 2020 | UPDATED: 09:21 07 September 2020

Jesse Walklin believes Welwyn Garden City can challenge once again in the Southern League. Picture: DANNY LOO

Jesse Walklin believes Welwyn Garden City can challenge once again in the Southern League. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2019 Archant

Welwyn Garden City skipper Jesse Walklin says lockdown came at just the right time – as it allowed him to recover from a broken leg without missing much football.

The tough-tackling midfielder suffered the blow against Bedworth United in February but with the pandemic hitting in March, and the subsequent delayed start, it means he has only missed a handful of games.

He said: “It was as good a time as any to have a broken leg. Nobody was doing anything, nobody was playing any football so I haven’t really had much more time out than anybody else.”

“I’ve had plenty of minutes and it feels good. I had one big challenge against Royston [earlier in pre-season] and it’s all good.

“We’ve got a lot of games before the season even starts so I’ll just be happy to make it to the FA Cup,” he joked.

“If I get beyond that I’ll have done alright this year.”

City were fourth when the season was voided and Walklin believes the club can match that at the very least this year.

“We’ve got the core of the team from last year and we’re looking to get the new additions gelled in,” he said.

“I think we’ll be really solid again, we’ve got a good spine. There is no reason we can’t be up there again.

“We’ll be a match for anyone.”

Their latest pre-season game certainly gave them a taste of the competitive fixtures to come.

Matches between WGC and neighbours Hertford Town often carry an edge and even though the personnel may have changed over the years, the 1-1 draw on Saturday was just as feisty.

City went into the game with a very strong line-up which included defender Carl Mensah who has rejoined the club for a third time following his departure from Bedford Town.

They took the lead in the first half although in slightly fortuitous circumstances.

George Ironton took a free-kick wide on the left and Mensah’s run across the box caused enough of a distraction to allow the ball to travel untouched into the net.

The lead lasted until 10 minutes from time when Lewis Adrian got on the end of a cross.

Thomas Opoku almost grabbed a winner but his shot just went wide leaving the score level.

City open the competitive part of their season on Saturday when they host Saffron Walden Town in the FA Cup preliminary round.


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