Date: 12th August 2010 at 6:45pm
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John Ashton has returned to full training this week, with a view to getting back into the first team as soon as possible. He told the Comet:

“Last season`s success was built on a strong defence and we conceded sloppy goals at the weekend and a set-piece against Portsmouth. Obviously being a defender myself, it`s disappointing when we concede goals like that but who`s to say those goals wouldn`t have happened if I was in the team – I would hope it wouldn`t though.’

It’s very tempting to say we wouldn’t have conceded those goals if you were playing, but let others do it for you, eh?

“The lads that have come into defence have done well and Bossie played there quite a bit last season and did well, but I`m hopeful I can get my spot back sooner rather than later.”

I hope so too. ‘Ash’ predicts a good season for the Boro:

“We want the same success this year as we had last season but we`re just taking it one game at a time.

“I`ve played in League 2 before and obviously the standard is a little bit better but I think we were a class above last season in the Conference and the step up isn`t really going to affect us. We`ve got quite a few lads that haven`t played at this level before and once they settle down and realise they are able to play at this level just as easily as they could in the Conference, then we will do well.’

We won’t ask why, if it’s ‘just as easy’ to play at this level as the Conference, did he end up at Grays? Why not? Because Ashton is hero. Brilliant last season, let’s hope he returns to the side – and that good form – very soon.