Next up in our In Depth series is City keeper Mike Green, who talks us through the highs and lows of last season and why he loves Gloucester City\r\n\r\nTalk us through last season for you, you started off at Eastleigh, did you\r\nthink you’d ever be back at Gloucester?\r\n\r\nHow was last season for you in terms of highs and lows?\r\n\r\nMike: Football is a funny little game, last season after failing to secure a professional contract with another club I found myself at Eastleigh. Somewhere I deep down I didn’t want to be at, but was drawn by the money aspect. After only two games into the season I received the dreaded phone call to say that there was wage cuts and “I am the lamb they had to slaughter.”\r\n\r\nIt was something that hurt and I hope that one day I will be able to prove to them how wrong they were. After only an hour of that phone call the Gaffer rang me to say that Kev had injured his shoulder and would be out for three games. Although I knew it was only going to be a short spell I jumped at the chance of coming back and see the lads again, it was as if I hadn’t been away. After the three games it was time to find another club and Cirencester were on the lookout for a keeper. I signed for them a week later, but almost immediately I could sense it was going to be a hard slog of a season ahead.\r\n\r\nWe had been dumped out of the F.A. cup first round and found ourselves bottom of the league with a few\r\npoints adrift. Out of the blue I then had another call from the Gaffa asking if I’d like to come back and play and again I didn’t have to think twice. Unfortunately I had been cup tied whilst at Ciren and the lads were on a brilliant cup run.\r\n\r\nSo for the first few weeks it was a case of staying patience and staying fit and take my opportunity when it finally comes. Once I got back playing I started to notice my knee was swelling up after every game. Not really taking too much notice, I carried on playing but it started to get progressively worse. I had to be honest with the Gaffer and mostly myself as I couldn’t carry on any longer and jeopardies team performances. So that was the end of the season for me. As for highs and lows, last season I experiences the extreme lows having no club one week into the season but highs of being back at a club I love playing for and being part of.\r\n\r\n You have really become part of the club in the past year, even though you haven’t really been playing, what have you got out of doing the commentary and being around the club on match days – are you a Gloucester fan now as well as a player? \r\n\r\nMike: Although I didn’t play much last season I thoroughly enjoyed being part of the club. Helping with the commentary was great fun and also gave me a different perspective of the games. Being high up in the stand you can see gaps to exploit and also the areas that the opponents are most vulnerable. I also saw first-hand the amount of effort and hard work from people across the club that goes into the organisation of a match day and the general running of the club.\r\n\r\nThe supporters at the club have been so good and so welcoming to me and I think that is why I’ve really embraced the club as my own. I’d also like to thank everyone again for the support they gave to “it’s in the bag” charity helping men with testicular cancer and helping raise awareness.\r\n\r\n Last year Gloucester had the fifth best defence in the league in terms of goals conceded, is it important/reassuring to have such a strong back line in front of you when you are in goal? How do you rate the City defenders? \r\n\r\nMike: I think the key to last season’s defensive record was the lack of injuries across the back four. As a goalkeeper it is really important that you build relationships with your back four and you become accustomed with each others game. Also when players were injured and the likes of Sam Rawlings stepped into the fold\r\nplayers around him encouraged and supported him through the game which gave him the belief to help him develop. I think Lewis Carey played his part also last season with some fine performances keeping us in some very tight games.\r\n\r\nMostly what I love about the defensive unit here is that we can shout and scream at one another on the field because we are all striving to keep that ball out of our net and get the best out of one another, but afterwards we are mates and nothing is taken to heart and taken personally.\r\n\r\n How have you found the transition from playing full time to part time? \r\n\r\nMike: It has been one of the hardest experiences I’ve had to deal with. From waking up every morning knowing I’m getting paid to play football. Now I’m working in a dead end job with not a lot of thinking involved, I absolutely hate it. I am now fitting in a part time learning course at college which I’m finding difficult but hopefully will be worth it in the end and help me start a new career alongside my football.\r\n\r\n You have been doing a bit of coaching – Will Morford says coaching helps him see his\r\nown game in a different way and helps him understand where the Gaffer is coming\r\nfrom sometimes – what do you get out of it? Does it help you in the same way? \r\n\r\nMike: Yeah definitely, I have been fortunate enough to work with SGS College on the coaching staff working closely with the goalkeepers but also coaching the team. I’ve found it really interesting and I’ve also tried incorporating tactics and ways of play like the Gaffer gets us to do here. I certainly think since I’ve pursued my coaching badges I’ve taken a lot more interest in the tactical side of the game and like to think I understand it and can put my own opinion across.\r\n\r\n Who would you say you get on best in the City dressing room, and how does\r\nit compare to other clubs you’ve been at? \r\n\r\nMike: I get on with everyone in the changing room and I’d like to think everyone gets on with me as well. I do like a good moan now and again but that’s only because I want the best from everyone and I’m always striving for success. It is certainly the best changing room I’ve come across in my short career.\r\nI believe it’s the best because when the chips are down everyone pulls together and we get the result and there is never any edginess or back stabbing.\r\n\r\n And finally what are your hopes for next season? \r\n\r\nMike: Playoffs!
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