One man in, one man out (temporarily)
K's sign Omarr Lawson, whilst Jerry Puemo joins Bognor Regis Town on loan.
Kingstonian Football Club are delighted to announce the signing of Omarr Lawson.
The former Dulwich Hamlet and Lewes player is a timely arrival at Kingstonian, bolstering Hayden Bird's squad as the Manager prepares for a hectic Spring period.
At 26, Omarr has the experience and the quality needed to improve the team. One of the technician's main attributes is his versatility. Lawson is equally as comfortable in playing as the No. 4, the No. 8 or the No. 10.
As one player arrives, another leaves, albeit on loan. Defender Jerry Puemo has signed for Bognor Regis Town on a month's loan, in order to get game time.
In view of the recent movements, the Official Website caught up with the Manager to discuss the transfers, in addition to recent performances.
Tell us about Omarr Lawson?
"I'm really pleased to sign Omarr," Hayden beamed. "He was on my proverbial wanted list in the Summer. Situations like this are not unusual. Sometimes you have to be patient to get the player you really want. I spoke to Omarr's agent two weeks ago and with his circumstances having changed, he was available. During the last couple of weeks, I have spoken to Omarr at length and met him to discuss our plans. I want him to be a big part of our team and once he settles and tops up his match fitness, I'm sure everyone will see his undoubted quality."
"As for Jerry, he is a player I like. Jack Pearce made an enquiry for him on Tuesday and we reached a deal that suits everyone. Bognor needed defenders and Jerry needs to play. Although he is developing very well, due to the form of Cookie, Harry, Simon and Sean, his chances were becoming limited. Going to Bognor for a month will sharpen him up and provide the minutes he requires to continue his development. We will assess the situation next month but we want our young players to play. It's a good opportunity for him, which we can benefit from in the medium to long term."
Can we expect any more signings?
"I've got my eye on two or three but realistically, they may not become available until the close-season. I'm pleased with the squad and will only add to the group when the right players become available."
Is the squad big enough to cope and do we need another striker?
"It's certainly true that we have been down on numbers since the turn of the year. However, Reece is in contention to return to the squad this weekend and Cookie is only days away. With the addition of Omarr and the recent return of Ben Harrison, that gives us nineteen fit and available players, which is the right number. I prefer tighter squads whereby everyone trains with the motivation of knowing they have a chance to play."
"As for signing another striker, I have great confidence in Eddie. For some reason, everyone keeps suggesting he is a winger. He isn't. Eddie is a centre forward. In fact, the reason he has left other clubs is the fact they wanted him to play as a winger, which he completely disliked. Eddie wants to play as a centre forward and I want him to fulfill his potential in that position. His natural attributes are perfect for the dynamics of this team."
"Complementing Eddie is Calum. Calum is a young player who already has great experience. This is a guy who trains to his maximum in every session and is fast improving with every week. I have great respect for Calum and have no doubt he will succeed here."
"Without harping back to last season, Kingstonian had Louie, Buchanan, Faal and Cundle all fighting for the same position. We are simply not in a position to afford such luxury and need our money to be spent prudently. I'm satisfied the squad has a good balance throughout, which is definitely the way forward for this Club."
Give us an idea of how you feel the team have developed during the season.
"Without the ball, Kingstonian have developed immeasurably. At the start of the season we were far too open and conceding far too easily. Currently, Kingstonian have the third best defensive record in the League, which provides a great platform to improve."
"Added to that, I'm delighted with the quality of our football. The performance levels and ideas with the ball are very pleasing. As a result, we've scored some great goals throughout the season. Gus' goal at Leatherhead was another to add to that list."
Where do we need to improve?
"That's easy; everywhere! As I mentioned in the interview after Tuesday's game, we are ticking boxes but not there yet. We have a tremendous spirit in the Dressing Room which transfers very clearly onto the pitch. The team is fighting for the shirt and the supporters can relate to that."
"Our work with the ball is excellent but needs to improve. We need to be far more cut throat in the final third of the field. It's for that reason we have suffered too many draws. It's frustrating, but an inevitable part of the process that I've experienced before."
"When I met the Club Directors, we agreed on a long term strategy to take the Club forward. A strategy of stability and a strategy of work on the Training Ground rather than the stereotypical and all too familiar "Non-League Revolving Door" that you get at most clubs. We are definitely ahead of schedule and will continue to reflect that, as we climb the table."
"In our first year together, if Kingstonian can reach the FA Cup Second Round, beating a League Two Club in the process, reach The FA Trophy Second Round and beat Woking along the way and then achieve our highest league position since Dowse left, we have a great platform to move forward. A foundation is being created here to ensure long term and sustained success. Although our cup success has raised expectations, I always knew it would take time."
Have you been pleased with recent performances?
"Largely, I'd say yes. There is no doubt we have played very well and really should have won far more points. The two games against East Thurrock United and the away game at Bognor are fine examples of this. Not to mention the agony of the last minute equaliser versus Horsham!"
"We were pleased to beat Brightlingsea and delighted that Eddie opened his account. The reception from the supporters he received said everything about this great Club. I think it is fair to suggest we were comfortable but nonetheless, thrilled to win."
"Leatherhead was a hard earned draw; a point won. They worked really hard to stop us playing and caused a few problems along the way. Having weathered the storm, I thought we got a foot-hold in the game and scored a terrific goal. To then concede an equaliser just before the break is an example where we need to improve."
"Eddie had two great chances in the second half. However, in the interests of fairness, the home team had a glorious opportunity in the last minute. Both teams could have won so perhaps a draw was just about right. It wasn't a game I enjoyed. A typical local derby and almost a fight from start to finish. However, the boys showed a different side to Kingstonian and competing very well throughout, showing great character in the difficult moments."
What's your views on Cray this weekend?
"I like Cray, I think they are a good side. On the first day of the season I predicted they would be challenging for the play-offs, so I'm not surprised to see them in 3rd place. Cray are a team that have benefited from a team that have a good identity and have developed together since Tony's appointment in 2015. Over the last five years the team have worked hard together, developed together and benefited from the right additions, rather than regular wholesale changes."
"Providing Storm Dennis doesn't make a mockery of the match, or even postpone the fixture, Saturday will be a very good game."
Any message to the supporters?
"Just to say thank you for your amazing support. I've said it many times this season and although I'm in fear of repeating myself, I'm not going to apologise for it. These supporters are second to none!"
"In recent weeks, I know it's been frustrating to have drawn games that we deserved to have won. As a team we understand how frustrating it is and believe me, we are more frustrated than anyone! However, we are currently 5th in the form guide and working hard to improve. Your support inspires us to do exactly that."
"Managing Kingstonian is a pleasure. Everyone from the Boardroom to the pitch to the terraces is in it together and fighting together! We've already enjoyed some magical memories together but this really is just the very start!"