Bradford PA v Telford - Match preview

Lee Vaughan is not one to talk about ‘getting too high or low’, but the experienced campaigner has called for calm from AFC Telford fans.

Gavin Cowan
Gavin Cowan

Gavin Cowan’s men suffered a disappointing midweek reverse to Chorley, who went into the game winless, writes Lewis Cox.

Telford remain sixth in National League North after three wins from nine games but have lost four times and are one of just three sides who have played that number of fixtures in the pandemic-hit campaign.

Vaughan, 34, back at the club after 10 years away, is never one to hide his emotions and the fiery full-back has called for level-headedness from fans while they follow the club online from the safety of their homes, while still not permitted entry in step two stadia.

Cowan’s troops head to the new 4G playing surface of Bradford Park Avenue tomorrow.

Former promotion hero Vaughan said: “The Telford fans are very much like me. I get too high when we win and too low when we lose.

“It’s something I’ve tried to change but I can’t, I find our fans are very similar.

“It’s not all doom and gloom because we lost at home to Chorley and we’re not going to win the league because we beat Brackley at home.

“The manager is very good at being level and it’s something I’d like to be, but unfortunately I’m not.”

Vaughan, who has played at right wing-back in all nine of Telford’s National North fixtures so far after returning in the summer, added: “I know what it’s like being around Telford and you lose at home and it’s like ‘oh my god! Let’s rip it all up’.

“But nothing’s changed. We’ve got to punch above our weight, we need to stick together as a group and a big Telford family.

“There’s things we’ve done good and things we’ve done bad. The aim is to be up in that half of the table, there’s no reason why we can’t do that.”

Vaughan, who has transitioned into the part-time game while working with Crossbar Coaching, has been keen to stress his return to Telford was not about joining a ‘retirement home’.

Instead the all-action full-back believes he has plenty left in the tank, and says the GPS vests players wear during matches back that theory up with data. “Nowadays, if I have a bad game I’m finished. If I have a good game I’ve still got it,” Vaughan added.

“I don’t have a good game or a bad game anymore in people’s eyes.

“Nothing’s changed for me, I still do the same things. I feel fit, we wear the GPS and that’s the same as when I was at Tranmere. I don’t over-think it.”

The former Cheltenham, Tranmere and Kidderminster man added: “I’ve done alright but I’m not ready to write a book, I’ve got things to do here and promotion to win here. I wasn’t coming here to be at an old people’s home.

“I came here to carry on and we can talk about my career after, but we’ve got a big job here and it means a lot to me and I know it does for the manager.

“It’s given me a boost at an age when I really needed it.”

Cowan takes Telford to face a Bradford PA side managed by ex-Guiseley chief Mark Bower, whose campaign has been a mixed bag so far.

Trips to the Horsfall Stadium used to be about blood, mud and thunder, but not any more, reckons Cowan, who said: “Teams in our league are physical but they do have a 4G pitch, which encourages teams to play football a bit more.

“I’ve been on the phone to Liam Watson at Southport and (he said) they want to play football. You won’t come off covered in mud.”

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