Gateshead beat Marc White’s Dorking Wanderers 6-0 at Gateshead International Stadium, but Rob Elliot is ‘hurting’ for players who did not get on the pitch.
The win was interim manager Elliot’s first win in the Gateshead dugout since taking charge of the first team following former manager Mike Williamson’s departure to MK Dons in October.
Elliot’s side ran rampant, with striker Billy Chadwick having a particularly impressive performance. But, with more responsibility comes added dilemmas and hurt when selecting a starting eleven.
“One of the things I am fortunate about stepping up since Mike is gone, is that I know these boys inside and out,’’ Elliot told SportsByte at full-time.
Elliot was appointed as Gateshead’s first ever Technical Director in August 2022, although his initial involvement in the club was back in 2020, where he trained with the first team following his exit from Newcastle United.
The English-born Irish international goalkeeper made 55 appearances for the Magpies in both the Premier League and the Championship, but often found his role being second or third choice.
‘’We do not sign anyone with character flaws, they are young, hungry, good lads and that was the biggest thing that hurts me the most…seeing how disappointed the lads are (to not be playing) as I have been there myself.
“(As a player) you are training hard and you are working, and you want that opportunity, look at Chadwick today.
‘’He is the epitome of ‘sometimes your chance doesn’t always come, but when it does you’ve got to take it,’ and that is what the buy-in needs to be.
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‘’You might not get your chance this week or next week, but when you do you have got to add it to the team. That is what is all about, and that is ultimately the character of this group.
‘’The ethos is, if you do not want to be a part of this group and you do not want to help these unbelievable people on their journey then you probably don’t belong here.’’
A product of the Hull City academy, Chadwick arrived in the summer on-loan from Stockport County and has found cementing a starting berth difficult. Despite this, the 23-year-old has now bagged four goals in 13 appearances.
An injury to top scorer Marcus Dinanga landed Chadwick just his second start of the season, and it was a performance that clearly impressed his manager and justified his inclusion from kick-off with an electric performance.
‘’Yeah definitely,’’ Chadwick told SportsByte when asked if getting his first match ball will spur him on to get even more.
‘’Obviously now I have got this, I am hungry to go and get some more goals.’’
Gateshead are back in National League action this Saturday as Elliot’s men face second-place Barnet away from home.
Elliot will hope to expand on his maiden managerial victory, while Chadwick put in a performance to warrant a strong consideration to start once again.