Bourne Town have put in plenty of effort off the pitch – now it’s time to improve the league position as well.
Last season, only four teams finished below the Wakes in Division One.
Joint manager Jimmy McDonnell won’t change the style of play and he wants the club to continue a policy of producing young players who can progress to a higher level.
He has also called for the town to show their support – starting at home to Raunds Town on Saturday (7.45pm kick-off) – after the club made ground improvements to Abbey Lawn this summer.
McDonnell said: “When I first took the job last year, I felt that without spending a lot of money we could be more professional.
“We’ve decorated both changing rooms, painted all around the ground, brought in new goals and added a path as well.
I’m always being told that Bourne people will back their club. For the first time in years, Saturday is a great chance for those people to prove what is being said.Jimmy McDonnell
“The committee have put in long shifts during the close season.
“I’m always being told that Bourne people will back their club.
“For the first time in years, Saturday is a great chance for those people to prove what is being said.
“The club have stepped up and we’re putting on a family day. So there are no excuses – everything is perfect to come here on Saturday night.
“You can see local players and we want them to relax on the ball as much as possible with our style of play.”
Joint manager Phil Gadsby – who returned to Bourne this summer – added: “We talked about the squad and we’ve managed to bring in the majority of players who we wanted here.
“There are eight new faces in a squad of 20. Nobody will be guaranteed to start the first game of the season and places are up for grabs with some healthy competition.
“There is a nice balance of talented, local youngsters and more experienced players.
“We’ve brought in lads who have won titles and played in the UCL. They know how to grind out results.
“The players aged 19 or 20 have potential and energy. They will run around all afternoon because they have that hunger to prove a point.
“Every club wants to be involved in the groundhop so it’s a big bonus for Bourne.
“A lot of people have been working hard at the ground this summer and the pitch looks immaculate.
“It’s going to be a really good day to kick off the season.
“There is a lot going on to make it a family fun day with something for everyone.
“Hopefully we’ll attract a big crowd to support us.
“Towards the end of last season, Bourne were getting crowds around 100 and we’ve got local lads playing as well.
“They want to wear this club’s shirt. We don’t pay them but they are happy to play for Bourne.
“We’ve also brought in a few more experienced players who won’t be overawed in front of bigger crowd.
“The support can give us extra energy and carry us on. The message to the team will be making sure they relish the