New Linby Colliery Welfare manager Lewis Saxby says he’s been encouraged by what he’s seen from his side so far this season despite a baptism of fire in the Central Midlands League South.
Linby have already played nine games, more than any other team, and sit eighth in the table having won three, drawn one and lost five of those games.
That’s left Saxby satisfied given the tough nature of the games they’ve faced.
He said: “I’m really enjoying it. We’ve played most of the better teams in this division like Selston, Hucknall and Eastwood already, and beat Sherwood Colliery who are also a strong side, so have had to learn quickly.
“We’ve also played nine games when some of the others have only played four or five, so it’s been hard work for the players having so many games to play, particularly as we’ve had quite a few injuries to contend with as well.
“We’re getting to a point now where we’ll start to play more teams who are in and around us in the table and that will give me more of an idea of where we’re at.”
At 27-years-old, Saxby is very much at the younger end of the age spectrum when it comes to management, but he says he feels more than capable of taking the club forward.
He said: “I’m relatively young which can have its advantages and disadvantages of course but I want to be a coach for a long time and also to take Linby forward as much as I can.
“Being younger I perhaps don’t have some of the commitements other managers have and can get out to watch lots of games and so on, as well as being closer to the players from an age perspective, but on the flipside I lack the experience that many others have.
“The aim at the start of this year was to establish ourselves and aim for a mid-table kind of position, but that’s not to say we can’t finish much higher than that.
“The eventual hopes of the club are to progress higher and the ground will be improved in the near future to allow that to happen, and I wouldn’t be here if that wasn’t an option as I certainly don’t want to be stood still in that sense.
“But in the meantime we need to give ourselves something to build on.”
Saxby, who was previously manager of Mansfield Town Ladies and who has also coached Teversal, has been left under no illusions as to how tough a division the CML South always is, particularly with the resources available to many of Linby’s rivals.
He said: “It’s competitive which is good but we’re up against clubs like Hucknall, Eastwood and last year’s champions Selston who have obviously been able to attract a lot of the better and more experienced players to their club.
“Our team is quite young overall which can sometimes be reflected in our performances, but overall I’ve been encouraged by what I’ve seen so far.”