Southern United will take an eight-game winless run into the start of the second half of the 2022 Coastal Premier League first grade season.
It has been a learning curve for the competition’s new boys, but coach Jonathan Newman is hopeful a consistent run of home fixtures can see them surge into finals contention.
Before a ball was kicked in the season the Ospreys had the furthest to travel, which has arguably played a role in their current eighth-place standing.
They have already clocked up the kilometres with seven of their 11 completed matches to date all on the road.
Of those matches, only one match – a 4-0 loss to Coffs United – is the only fixture where they haven’t been in the contest.
Their home record is a similar story with a win, a draw and two losses – one of which was the last kick of the game against Bellingen on June 4.
So it could be argued that they have done most of the hard work already.
“We’ve got a lot more home matches to come and I’m feeling reasonably confident that we’re going to start picking up some points,” Newman said.
They have, however, left themselves with some work to do before they can be considered genuine finals contenders.
It’s something that is not lost on the coach who admitted they hadn’t matched their pre-season predictions.
“I think we might have overestimated things to start off with,” the coach said.
“We wondered how simple it would be to get a bunch of guys that hadn’t really played yet into a cohesive unit and how long it takes.”
Newman said it had been a “massive learning experience” for everyone at the club.
“We’ve played in leagues before where you can make five or six mistakes in the game and it might cost you one goal or two, but five or six mistakes in this league and you can ship four goals easily,” he said.
“The players now realise the sort of football that might have won the old Football Mid North Coast Premier League in the past isn’t going to be enough to win a Coastal Premier League.”
The coach said he would “only just” give his side a pass mark at the halfway point in the season.
“I’m really critical and I hate losing and if you look at our record defensively we’ve conceded far too many goals,” he said.
“The flip side is we’re not taking the chances that we should. It probably sounds critical but we’re not where I’d like us to have been at this particular point in the competition.
“Is it a pass mark? Only just.