11:08AM, Thursday 22 July 2021
Kane Ferdinand (right). Photo: George Tewkesbury.
Maidenhead United's new signing Kane Ferdinand was able to get a feel for how the side will set up this season, and an understanding of his teammates style of play, during Saturday's behind closed doors friendly with MK Dons.
The Dons eventually emerged 3-1 winners after 120 minutes of football, split into four quarters, however, the Magpies played well for much of the game - and took the lead through Sam Barratt - before tiring in the latter stages. Hardly surprising given the blistering heat and having only returned to pre-season training the previous week.
Sam Barratt tucked the ball home after his initial penalty was saved before the Dons equalised in the 79th minute and went on to win the match with goals in the 94th and 105th minutes.
Reflecting on the workout, Ferdinand told Maidenhead United’s Grace Scott: “It was a very good work out for the boys.
“Especially in this heat. It was good to understand how everyone else plays and know how they move on the pitch.
“I thought it was a good display, especially for the first couple of quarters and then understandably the boys got a little tired, but it was a good day.
“It (the temperature) might have slowed down the tempo a bit, but as the gaffer’s been saying, it’s all about fitness.
“Today, and next week as well, it’s going to be about getting the minutes under your belt and hopefully we’ll be ready for the first game.”
United will welcome fans into York Road for their next friendly against League 2 Leyton Orient on Saturday, 3pm kick-off.
They'll then visit Staines Town (Saturday, July 31, 12pm kick-off) and Farnborough (Saturday, July 31, 3.30pm kick-off) for an away double-header before welcoming Reading u23s to York Road on Friday, August 6, 7.30pm kick-off), and AFC Bournemouth on Tuesday, August 17, 7.30pm kick-off.
Tickets for the Leyton Orient, Reading u23s and AFC Bournemouth friendlies are available from the club’s website at £10 for adults and £5 for concessions, with u16s free.
Kane added that he believes the Magpies fans will be the team's '12th man this season' and hopes to make an impression on them by scoring and creating goals.
“It’s going to be great having them back and throughout the season they can make a big difference, a big effort,” added Ferdinand. “They can be the 12th man and it’s going to be good to see them back.
“Hopefully, we can give them a good performance.
“My personal target is to score maybe at least eight goals, eight to 10 goals. I’m pretty sure Dev would want that as well.
“We’ll see how we go on. I want to play every game and help the team as much as I can and if I’m scoring and assisting, I’m doing my job.”
The race to get as many people vaccinated against coronavirus has ramped up in the Royal Borough and Slough amidst an ongoing rise in cases across the country.