Captain Liam wants the same again from Diamonds

Liam Dolman celebrates his goal during Diamonds' opening-day success at Barwell. Picture courtesy of HawkinsImages
Liam Dolman celebrates his goal during Diamonds' opening-day success at Barwell. Picture courtesy of HawkinsImages

Liam Dolman was back doing what he does best for AFC Rushden & Diamonds at the weekend.

The Diamonds captain produced a typically solid display in the backline and then also grabbed the opening goal of the game when he converted a trademark long throw from Sam Brown with a right-footed volley.

Andy Peaks’ team went on to claim a 2-0 victory at Barwell to kick-off the new BetVictor Southern League Premier Division Central campaign in impressive fashion.

They are straight back into action as they take on Leiston in their first home game of the season at Hayden Road tonight (Tuesday).

And Dolman knows they can’t afford to take anyone lightly, despite the winning start.

“I am still enjoying my football thoroughly,” the experienced Diamonds skipper said.

“We had a good pre-season and we worked hard. The lads have put it in from the moment we came back to the present time.

“I thought that showed on Saturday. We were fit and strong and we held our own.

“But we know we can’t underestimate anyone. Any team can beat any other in this league and we found that out last season when we took a good hiding towards the end of the campaign when we weren’t at it.

“All we have to do is build on the second half from Saturday and show the same attitude.

“First and foremost we have to work hard and everything else will take care of itself.”

As far as the opening day was concerned, Dolman was understandably delighted to play such a key role in a winning start.

Jack Ashton wrapped things up with a header from another set-piece as both goals came in the second half.

And Dolman added: “The first half wasn’t great. It wasn’t bad but we didn’t get enough shots off with the wind behind us, we should have tested their goalkeeper more than we did.

“But we had a chat at half-time and I thought that up the hill, against the wind you couldn’t have asked for a better performance.

“We dug in, we took our chances from set-pieces and that’s something we have talked about. Winning set-pieces in both boxes could get you 15 to 18 points a season.

“Sam’s long throw is a weapon and it will cause every team a problem, especially with the aerial threat we have.

“You have to use it to your advantage and we did on Saturday and, luckily for me, I was there to stick it away.”