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With Varsity imminent, we caught up with captain and central-midfielder for the Mens First XI, Jack Maggs, to hear his thoughts on a turbulent season and preparation for the derby.
How has the season gone so far?
It’s been a tough but enjoyable season. Last year we were promoted into 1A after a fantastic season, but we unfortunately lost a lot of boys. Despite been relegated this season, we have loved every minute of it. We have had the opportunity to play against some great teams and the transition from 2A to 1A is evident with some teams, such as Swansea, clearly being a cut above the rest.
Who have been the key players so far this season we should be looking out for at the weekend?
The squad as a whole have been key. Every player in the team can produce something special on their day, whether it’s a big tackle or a ‘worldie’ finish. If I were to name certain individuals, the first name that pops into my head is KSB. He’s probably the best keeper I have ever played with, and he’s saved us on many occasions this year. He is the full package. Similarly, Danny Knight has scored some key goals for us this season. He is physical, technical and can play with both feet. Marius Aasen and vice-captain Rob Attwood both love a challenge so look out for them on Saturday as it is going to be a real battle. I honestly could write about every player as they have all been key this season.
How has your training differed in preparation for the big game?
It hasn’t changed at all really, we have trained like we have been all season.
How prepared do you feel as a team playing away from home this year?
I honestly don’t think it matters at home or away. Whether we play home or away, there are going to be 22 men on the pitch, 2 goals and some grass. We are prepared either way.
How much does the support from Southampton students motivate the team to keep pushing forwards?
We are not really used to big crowds at our games so seeing a few familiar faces on Saturday can only be a positive.
What style of football do you normally play, and will the importance of the game affect the way you set-up and play?
At times this season, we have played teams off of the pitch with our passing football but have failed to score from chances created. If our usual style of play isn’t working then we will look to play more direct and try to create more chances.
What is your score prediction? Do you expect another close contest?
I expect it will be a close game but of course I predict a Southampton win.
If you win, how do you plan on celebrating the result?
We plan to celebrate like we do every Wednesday. Meet for the social, have a few cold ones and see what happens.