Hornchurch tell Payne to stay cool
12:00 04 May 2014
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Manager and teammate want striker to fulfil potential
Hornchurch manager Jimmy McFarlane has warned Stefan Payne to curb his temper or risk wasting his talent following the striker’s behavior in Wednesday’s Ryman Premier play-off semi-final.
Payne was substituted in the 35th minute during the 1-0 win against Kingstonian as McFarlane feared the striker was on the verge of seeing red.
The forward had picked up a needless booking for deliberately handling the ball in the 22nd minute before he came close on three separate occasions to receiving a second yellow card.
The Kingsmeadow crowd were on Payne’s back from the start and unfortunately it got the better of the striker, meaning McFarlane was left with only one decision to make.
“Somebody said that was a very, very brave decision to replace him, but it is not that brave,” said McFarlane.
“It is either brave or stupid and it is brave because we have won, but I just stopped him getting sent off.
“His yellow card was just ridiculous and he did that at Hemel Hempstead earlier this season and got sent off.
“I just hope he learns from it. He is only 22, but if he doesn’t learn from it he’ll be flitting around from club to club as he gets older.
“He has got to learn to curb his temper because once you get a name in this football, or any football, for being a hothead then people will sort you out.”
There is no doubting Payne’s quality as his record for Hornchurch this season demonstrates.
The 22-year-old, who is suspended for Monday’s play-off final at Lowestoft, ended the campaign with 32 goals in 46 games for Urchins.
And Payne’s friend and fellow team-mate Rickie Hayles believes the forward is unstoppable, when he keeps his cool.
Hayles acknowledged that he previously carried a reputation as a hot-tempered player himself, but has matured this season.
And the Urchins defender hopes Payne can let his talent do the talking in the future.
Hayles said: “I wouldn’t say I am a role model to him, but as a friend and someone that has been there, obviously he listens to me as I am sure he listens to a lot of players.
“I try to be there and keep him cool because when he is cool and just thinks about the football; he is unplayable.
“I think he is one of the best strikers in this league. The goals show it and none of them are penalties as well so I think he is a great player.”
The hope will be that he learns from the experiences of this year and goes on to fulfill his huge potential in the future.