Rutherford fired up for his Hawks mission 

Alfie Rutherford has made a big impact on his return to the Hawks after a successful loan spell. Picture: Keith Woodland
Alfie Rutherford has made a big impact on his return to the Hawks after a successful loan spell. Picture: Keith Woodland
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Alfie Rutherford has returned to the Hawks hungry for goals after getting a timely boost from his loan spell at Eastbourne Borough.

The 22-year-old striker is determined to establish himself as a leading goalscorer in the Vanarama National League.

He has scored three goals in two games since being recalled from Borough.

Rutherford is determined to kick on and feels his short spell with the Sussex side has set him up well.

He said: ‘I was struggling to get into the side so at the time going out on loan was the best thing for me.

‘The Hawks were playing one up front, making it difficult for me.

‘I spoke to the gaffer and explained I needed to be playing games and getting more football under my belt.

‘It was a frustrating period because I had done well after going on as a late substitute in the 3-2 win at Braintree.

‘The gaffer understood I was hungry to play and felt I was losing my match fitness.

‘There were a few clubs interested in taking me, including Bognor and Lewes.

‘But I have played for Eastbourne manager Jamie Howell before and knew the way he plays works for me.’

After a tough first game at Gloucester City, when Rutherford felt he tired after 70 minutes, the youngster wasted little time making an impact.

He scored six goals in the next four games including a hat-trick.

Rutherford was recalled following the Hawks’ heavy 4-0 defeat at Leyton Orient.

It was the fourth successive game without a goal for the team.

Bradbury felt the situation needed addressing and believed Rutherford could be the answer.

The young striker added: ‘I felt every game I played on loan I was getting sharper.

‘Then after scoring a hat-trick I found myself recalled by the Hawks.

‘I said to the gaffer that if I was coming back then I needed to be playing.

‘He said I would be given my chance and I had a lovely reception from everyone at the club when I turned up.

‘I started the game against FC Halifax and got on the scoresheet again.

‘Having been away I am hungry to show I can score goals.

‘I have always wanted to play at the highest level possible and there can't be many players at my age in the National League.

‘The ambition has always been to go higher.

‘It is now up to me to keep the other strikers out of the team.

‘Now it is very much in my own hands.’

Against FC Halifax Bradbury opted for a strike partnership of Rutherford and Alfie Pavey with Nicke Kabamba dropping to the bench.

The Hawks are without a game this weekend because they were knocked out of the FA Cup.

Bradbury's side are in action at Chesterfield on Saturday, November 17.

Then the next home league match is on Saturday, November 24 against Maidstone United (3pm).