Lessons learned for Liam in Steelmen’s season of struggle

Corby Town defender Liam Marshall, pictured during the final game of the season at Harrogate Town last weekend. Picture by David Tilley
Corby Town defender Liam Marshall, pictured during the final game of the season at Harrogate Town last weekend. Picture by David Tilley

Corby Town youngster Liam Marshall believes the experiences he has faced this season will help in his development as a player in the future.

The Steelmen struggled in the Vanarama National League North, finishing bottom of the pile after a run of 14 league games without success tormenting their battle to avoid the drop.

However, whilst conceding that it has been a tough spell for the club, Marshall thinks that since he has arrived at the club he has learned lessons that will hold him in good stead for the future.

“Of course I have learned a lot about non-League, it’s not easy,” the former Brooke Weston student said.

“I believe these experiences can be turned into a positive.

“Being in a relegation battle at 19 is not ideal but now it has happened, I’ve been there and can make sure it does not ever happen again.

“This season will of course help me in the future and not just on-the-pitch, but, decisions I made prior to the season were something I can learn from.”

The young defender enjoyed spells with Leicester City and Peterborough United’s respective youth set-ups before being released by Posh at the end of the 2014-15 campaign.

Gavin Strachan, who spent a season with Corby, took the youngster to Ilkeston where Marshall admits some adjustments were needed to aid his own game in non-League football.

“Obviously I joined Ilkeston from Peterborough so the standard was a lot different,” said Marshall.

“It took a few games to get used to the type of football the Evo-Stik North had in store for me.

“Then after moving up a league from Ilkeston to Corby, I’ve not really found it too much different, of course I’m playing with and against better players.”

Marshall signed for Corby in February of this year ahead of a tough battle for survival but he was keen to get back playing and to take on a new challenge.

“I was out for 12 weeks prior to signing for Corby so it took me a few weeks to get back fit to play,” he said.

“I was well aware of the form Corby were in but it’s my home town club so it appealed to me to try to help them get out of the situation.”

The youngster had a tough time with some injuries which kept throwing up barriers in the early stages of his career but reserves praise for his manager, Tommy Wright, who has offered him the chance to get back working towards his long-term aims.

Wright has expressed a desire to nurture the younger players so that they can be ready to step into the first team and Marshall believes this will help the club next season.

“Yes I have a good relationship with Tommy and he has given me a lot of confidence,” the defender said.

“Bringing me in during a relegation battle, and playing me. I believe youth is the right way and I’m 100 per cent confident we’ll bounce straight back up.

“My short term target is playing as many games as possible, getting a full season under my belt injury free. Hopefully my performances will bring attention to myself and get back to the Football League.”

Corby signed off for the season with a forgettable 5-0 defeat at Harrogate Town on Saturday and will be keen to move on from a disappointing campaign.

Marshall has shown his maturity having been exposed to the realities of the football world at a young age and knows it is a case of moving on for the club

“Relegation is horrible, but it’s happened and we can’t change anything now, so we have to move on and make sure we put it right next season,” he said.

“Now the season is over, it’s about having a little bit of time off, then keep ticking over.

“We have got to use this time to gain an advantage on the other sides and come back fitter than anyone else.”