“WE’RE ready for it,” is the upbeat message from Buxton FC manager John Reed as his side open their fifth successive season in the Evo-Stik League Premier Division on Saturday at home to Northwich Victoria (kick-off 3pm at the Silverlands).
Reed has made no secret of the fact that the Bucks, who finished just outside the play-offs last time around, could face a difficult season ahead, but this week the boss vowed his players would ‘give it absolutely everything’ and called on supporters to get behind their team.
He said: “I’m really looking forward to the start of the season. The first game is always special, especially as it is at home, but against Northwich it’s going to be very difficult. They are a very good outfit, but hopefully we can play to our potential.
“We have had a reasonable pre-season and there are a lot of positives. We are working hard and have got everybody fit, and we have a system which we hope will be good for us, but only time will tell if we have improved.
“Last year we finished sixth and everyone automatically expects the same or better. It doesn’t work like that. We are not a Chester, a Halifax, a Bradford, we all know the budgets they have, and I’m not knocking that. We don’t cry about it, we get on with it. This season, I will be delighted if we finish in the top ten.”
Off the pitch, pre-season has been a frustrating time for the backroom staff as they attempted to bring in new blood and plug the gaps left by the departure of captain Gregg Anderson and legendary goalscorer Mark Reed. But having retained the nucleus of last season’s squad, new faces among the likes of Kyle Hadley, David Taylor and Matt Parry have been snapped up.
Reed added: “Over the summer we have tried so many people (new players) it is incredible, and have been knocked back many, many times. But I think we are nearly ready. We will see how we do in the first couple of games, and if we have to change things, maybe bring one or two players in on loan, then we will.
“Make no mistake, I am really looking forward to it, we are all up for it, and I just hope and pray that the people of Buxton get behind the lads because we are going to give it absolutely everything. We are up for it.”
Next Tuesday, the Bucks face a tough-looking trip to ex-Southern League side Hednesford Town. Kick-off is 7.45pm.