Thu, 23 Jan 2020
NEWLY-appointed Hungerford Town club captain Joe Tomlinson has expressed his joy at being handed the armband until the end of the season.
The 19-year-old was given the role after it was announced that former skipper Taofiq Olomowewe has left Bulpit Lane to join fellow National League South side, Chelmsford City.
Tomlinson has been a popular figure in the Crusaders squad, playing in a number of positions as well as contributing with goals and assists.
And since Olomowewe’s departure, the versatile player was grateful manager Ian Herring trusted him with the opportunity.
“I feel confident in myself to be able to step into the role and lead the team to safety this season,” he said.
“It’s something that I wanted and I made that clear to the manager and I’m very grateful for the belief that the gaffer has put in me for trusting me with this prestigious role in the team.
“I’m excited to be the new captain and hopefully I can make the club proud and prove to everyone that we can stay in the league.”
Tomlinson, who has had spells with Yeovil Town and Brighton & Hove Albion, has also praised the support from his family and friends.
He said: “It’s an extremely proud moment for myself and for my family.
“My family and my girlfriend have supported me all season and I’m sure it will be nice for them to see me lead the team out every week.
“I’m not getting too carried away, though, as it is an extremely important time for this football club and I am determined to help us survive relegation.”
With Tomlinson being involved in a variety of positions on the pitch, he has stated his gratitude to Herring, who has developed him as a player.
He said: “I want to play every game and help the team as much as possible, whether that be playing in my preferred position or playing in any other position.
“The gaffer has definitely improved my game by teaching me how to play different positions on the pitch and in different formations, which has improved my level of football knowledge and understanding.
“He has also allowed me to improve by putting his faith in me all season and giving me a lot of game time in a competitive league, which I believe is the best way to improve.
“As a person, he has made me more confident in myself and given me the belief that I can be a leader and be an important player in the team,” added Tomlinson.
Despite Hungerford slipping to a 3-2 defeat at Welling United, and moving further from safety, Tomlinson is confident they can still avoid the drop this season.
“There are still a lot of points to play for and the players in the changing room still have huge belief that we can put together a good run of form and climb up the table.
“We just need to take each game as it comes and try to take as many points as possible from our remaining games.
“We have a target and we believe that we can reach that target and keep this football club in the league.
Tomlinson is also hoping he can reward the fans with another year in the National League South.
He said: “The fans have been amazing this season and they have supported us throughout this difficult period.
“They have been given us so much confidence and all the players in the team want to win games for the fans.
“You can see how much they mean to us as we celebrate with them after every win and thank them for their support when the result isn’t what we wanted.
“Hopefully they can see that all the players have given everything for them and the club this season and we will all continue to do so till the end of the season,” he added.