FC Halifax Town: "I definitely feel like a better player than when I first came in," says Green

Kieran Green's man-of-the-match performance against Dagenham and Redbridge on Tuesday night simply added to the growing collection.

Thursday, 28th October 2021, 1:58 pm
Kieran Green celebrates his goal against Dagenham and Redbridge on Tuesday night. Photo: Marcus Branston

Green had produced a string of impressive performances this season, building on what was a successful first year at the club.

The midfielder has become the lynchpin of this FC Halifax Town side, providing the fuel in the engine room, the driving force in a well-oiled machine.

"I feel it's been a good season," he said.

"I got Covid at a bad time, I got it just before the season so that affected my place in the team early doors.

"But then after four or five games, I was in and I've enjoyed it, playing week-in, week-out.

"I wasn't too worried, I felt I went back strongly into pre-season.

"The Covid set me back a bit and I was only back in the week of the first game, so I was ten days behind.

"The gaffer and the physio said they didn't think it was wise for me to start the season (in the team) and that I should get back up to speed in training and build my minutes up as we go."

Green modestly credits his excellent form to those around him in the Town side.

"I think it's probably being in the best team I've been in, that's got a lot to do with it," he said.

"I'm enjoying playing in this team and I feel like I've got an important role.

"It's not particularly pretty all the time what my duties are on the pitch, but I'm enjoying it.

"I feel like I'm doing well, I'm just doing what I have to really."

Town boss Pete Wild confirmed to the Courier this week that Green signed a new two-year deal with the club this summer, having joined Halifax from York in August last year.

"I feel like I've got a bit more National League savvy and I've built up some more games in this league so I feel like I know the league better," he said.

"I feel a lot fitter than I was when I first came in, that was probably the biggest gulf for me, the fitness side of it.

"I feel like I've cracked down on that and I definitely feel like a better player than when I first came in."

Green says he feels like he belongs at National League level now.

"100 per cent, yeah, that's just confidence, you've always got to back yourself at the level you're at."

Green feels the team spirit within the squad is a big part of why The Shaymen have started the season so strongly, sitting just three points off top spot in the National League.

"You've got to praise the staff for the characters they want in the building, I think that's what they like to build it on, so we've got a good group," he said.

"We want to play for each other, there's no egos, egos are left at the door, so it's definitely serving us well at the minute."

When asked if there was any reason why Halifax can't maintain their form, Green said: "No I don't think there is.

"It's such a cliched way to look at it but you've got to take it game-by-game.

"If we approach every game like we've approached every game this season, then I don't think there's too many reasons why we can't.

"If we had a dip in form or had a bad spell it'd probably be a different answer, but with the way we're playing, we certainly deserve to be where we are.

"We've got a certain way we like to play.

"There's a lot of things that can affect that, like the opposition being a bit uglier in trying to get in your faces, conditions, or pitches.

"But I feel like we've stuck to the plan pretty much all the time, for every game we've had, we've always tried to do it our way.

"There's a never-give-up sort of mentality, which I think serves us well as well.

"We spend all week making sure that Saturday is the easy part when it comes to tactics, how we want to do it, the game plan.

"We can have some long days on the training ground but it's all worth it on a Saturday when we get it right."

The 24-year-old will now take some shifting from the Halifax starting 11.

"I just want to help the team out as much as I can really and go from there, keep doing what I'm doing, keep trying to help people out as much as I can, whether that be with my performances, on the training ground or the information I'm giving people."

One striking aspect of Green's game is his communication, constantly cajoling and encouraging team-mates on the pitch, and he says the vocal side to his game is something that comes naturally to him.

"Ultimately it makes my game easier, and it's a lot of work I do with the staff in trying to know other people's positions so that I can help them when they're caught out of position a bit," he said.

"Naz (Niall Maher) is a big talker though, we've got a lot of big talkers and I think it helps everyone if everyone's in constant communication with each other.

"It's a bit different to last season because I played a lot of last season in a more attacking role, in a 10, whereas this season I'm a bit more behind the ball so I can see the full picture a bit more.

"So that helps in terms of giving out information."

And Green is relishing his deeper role in the side after playing some games as a number ten last season.

"That was what I came to the club to do (play deeper) but through injuries last season I had to play out of position for the majority of the season, which I don't mind," he said.

"It's all about helping the team, I did my best up there, but I've had the opportunity to play midfield this season."

Green feels he and Kian Spence, who have formed an effective midfield partnership, compliment each other well.

"Kian's a great pro, he's got a great attitude and I feel like we've got a good thing going there together at the minute so long may that continue," he said.

"We've just got to keep improving every day.

"I think him coming in and doing so well is credit to the group really because sometimes it's not easy to be on the ball every day in training when you're not in the team.

"The gaffer's always going on about how important (it is) the lads that aren't in the team are switched on because there's going to be a day when they need to slot in, and the better you know what we're trying to do and where you need to be etc, the easier you're going to make it for yourself, and Kian's the perfect example of that.

"Yes he probably wasn't getting the game time he wanted earlier in the season and last season, but he's always listening to information and he's slotted in well, he's never looked out of place once."