Lee Bradbury has brought loanee defender Josh Hill to the club from Boreham Wood in a bid to solve the Hawks’ defensive problems.
The centre-back was thrown straight into the side for the win against Forest Green Rovers in the FA Trophy on Saturday – and made an impressive debut.
Bradbury’s team were then handed another home tie against Welling United in yesterday’s second round draw.
With his team possessing the worst defensive record in the Vanarama National league South, Bradbury knew action was necessary sooner rather than later.
He is hoping 24-year-old Hill, who was a pivotal part of Boreham Wood’s promotion-winning side last season, will bring the added experience needed.
Hill has been on loan at Hemel Hempstead after his parent club’s decision to go full-time made it difficult for him to commit due to his work commitments in London.
‘I work in the digital marketing department for the sports charity Youth Trust,’ explained Hill.
‘We have an office on the Tottenham Court Road and I work from 9am to 5pm.
‘They are very flexible and good at letting me have time off for football.
‘I tried it for a period of time but it is difficult to do your job properly when you are missing for three or more mornings a week.
‘It was a shame after the success of being promoted last season.
‘Three months is a long time in football and I am not looking beyond that.
‘So all I want to do is play and enjoy my football.’
Hill hardly put a foot wrong on his Westleigh Park debut, despite only arriving at the club 24 hours before.
He didn’t have the chance to train with his new team-mates in the build-up to the game and only met them before kick-off.
The defender took it all in his stride, though, and provided a presence and experience in the heart of the defence which the Hawks have been missing.
The Welshman spent his first 18 years in Cardiff, before taking his place at Loughborough University to study for a sports science degree.
He played 50-plus games for Coalville Town in the Northern Premier League South and received supporters’ and the manager’s player of the year accolades.
Hill was then snapped up by Worksop Town, before moving south and signing for Dartford and then Boreham Wood.
Bradbury was delighted with the defender’s debut and believes he can help the Hawks stem the flow of goals against them.
‘I thought he made a great debut and that was after he had been out for a couple of weeks with an ankle injury,’ said the manager.
‘Josh and Lee Molyneaux looked very solid against two lively strikers.
‘First and foremost, they defended well and kept a clean sheet which has been a bit of a rarity for us.
‘Josh has a lot of experience and has been there and done it at our level.
‘It means when we have our other defenders back from injury we will have a lot of strength in depth.’
Bradbury added: ‘ I am pleased to get another home draw in the FA Trophy, especially as it is against a team from the higher level.
‘That is the key to it because our home record has been good this season.
‘Welling, like us, will be disappointed with their season so far.
‘After beating Forest Green we can approach the tie with confidence.’