Tuesday evening saw Dartford host Slough Town at Bericote Powerhouse Princes Park. Defender Joash Nembhard featured in our matchday programme that day. For those who missed that feature, here is the full article:
Joash Nembhard is a man who takes his health seriously. The defender has a seriousness about himself and yet is in good spirits when we sat down to chat over WhatsApp a few weeks ago.
“I’m well thanks Chris. I’m alive and kicking! I’ve recently started taking up golf, which has taken up a lot of my spare time. I’ve been going to the range and really trying to get into it. I go two-three times a week and I’m enjoying it. I enjoy watching golf as well and have been watching videos of it too… so, yeah, it’s quite an interesting learn so far.”
Outside of football and golf, Joash works for a private coaching company, which not only keeps him focused on the same field in which he plays, but also helps with his well-being, health, and fitness… something that’s vital for the player…
“Anyone who knows me, knows that I take very good care of myself. I spend a lot of time in the gym and spend a lot of time on my recovery after games. I make sure to also spend time in the swimming pool, sauna, and ice-bath. I’m also extremely careful with what I eat.
“Everything I do ties in hand with my other job as well. I’m very fortunate that my best friend owns a private coaching company, which offers one-to-one coaching. I’ve been working there for two-three years now, which not only helps me a great deal with my own fitness, etc…, but also with my mental wellbeing. It’s based in the same field I play, which means that it’s less stressful on me. The job means I get to enjoy helping and developing kids as much as I can. So yeah, it’s something that I really enjoy and it helps me as well.”
After an excellent campaign with Havant & Waterlooville last term, Joash Nembhard was in high demand during the off-season. The defender could have picked from any team in the league, so why did he sign on the dotted line for Dartford?
“I signed for the club because, it’s a club that’s run really well and has a great history. Dowse is a good manager, and all our ambitions are aligned. We want to do as well as we possibly can this season and win as many games as we can too.”
We have a long season ahead of us, but a slow start has since been rewarded with two victories and two clean sheets (at the time of writing). Both outcomes are pleasing, but more so for a player like Joash, who loves to defend and push his teammates to keep the ball away from the Dartford goal. It also goes without saying the support is essential to the team’s success. Does he have a message for “the Dartford fans?
“Yes, I do Chris… To the fans, please stick with us through the whole season. Obviously, it’s a long season… 46 games, plus cup competitions and then possible play-offs at the end. It’s massively powerful to know that you have a group of fans that are behind you, pushing you all the way through the good times and the tough times. Whether it’s away or at home, on a sell-out Saturday afternoon or a Tuesday night, please stick with us for the whole season.”
Faith or Superstition?
I’m a Christian. My superstition is that every time I go out onto the pitch, I say the Lord’s Prayer, It’s something that I’ve done since the U14s.
Probably signing my first pro contract when I was 19-20. It felt like everything I’d worked so hard for up to that time was worth it, as I’d never been in an academy either. Everything paid off and I was given the opportunity to play.
Biggest Influence In Your Career?
I’ve got a few. My first school academy coach John Bitting (now at MK Dons). He helped in terms of my development technically as a footballer. My agent Alrick Newby, who I’ve been with for 8 years now. He helps me in terms of guidance and support. And my Dad. He’s always been with me and has travelled to all my games across the country. He’d travel up to Wales when I was with TNS, doing the round trip, even when my games were at 7.45 at night! Mum used to hate it! He’s been to all my games whenever he can and watches from the stands, so is a huge influence on me.
Best Goal Scored?
Probably my first professional goal… in the 94th minute against Queens Park in the Iron Bru Cup, to draw the game. The ball came into the box and I scored from a half-volley with my left foot into the top corner.
Most Under-Rated Player You’ve Played With?
I’d only say under-rated because, not a lot of people would know him. But he’s one of the best players that I’ve ever played with. His name is Ryan Brobbel (at TNS). Also, Craig Eastmond (at Sutton United). Both are unbelievable footballers.
Most Under-Rated Player You’ve Played Against?
At The New Saints (TNS) we used to play against Rangers every pre-season, and this particular year was the time when Steven Gerrard took over. I played against Scott Arfield (now at Charlotte, USA), and I could not get anywhere near him! He was taking one-two touches and didn’t really get out of second gear!
Biggest Influence In The Dressing Room?
I would say Luke Coulson. His energy is infectious. He has such a positive energy and keeps us all focused. During pre-season he really helped me to get over everything and gel with the team.
If you were to be involved with a five-a-side tournament, and had to select the best players you have played against/with, which five players would you choose?
I’ll go with players I’ve played alongside…. Craig Eastmond (at Sutton United), Ben Cabango (at Swansea City), Samir Carruthers (at Chelmsford City), Ryan Brobbel (at The New Saints), and Joe Pritchard (at Accrington Stanley).
By Chris Palmer