We’re under no pressure. We’re a little club in my eyes. Let’s see where we can take Sevenoaks, says manager Micky Collins

Monday 13th August 2018

SEVENOAKS TOWN manager Micky Collins says he is looking forward to taking the club into the Bostik South East Division for the first time.

The Oaks claimed the Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division title for the first time last season and make their Isthmian League debut when Horsham visit Greatness Park next Saturday.

Collins saw his side thrash their former league rivals Lordswood by six goals to one in The FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round at the weekend.

Horsham kicked off their Bostik South East Division campaign with a 2-1 home defeat to Sittingbourne at the weekend and Collins is looking forward to making their debut, something that seemed unthinkable five years ago when the club were a perennial struggler in the old Kent League.

“It’s nice it’s at home. It’s great for us and the fact that we’ve got tomorrow and Thursday to work on stuff that we were not happy with on Saturday,” said Collins.

“We’ve stepped up as a whole club. We video the games now so we can look back at some of the stuff we’re not happy with and gives me an opportunity to implement it on Thursday, it’s professional.

“As a club we’ve improved for years since I’ve been here and we get everything we can right.  It’s positive.  I’m really happy for Paul Lansdale (chairman) and the directors but I know how much work they put in. It’s nice to reward them with a bit of prize money, it’s a good day for the club.”

Collins can turn Sevenoaks Town into a dark horse for the play-offs but he insists he wants to avoid relegation in year one.

“Well, for the minute, coming into it, the first thing you think about is ‘don’t go down,” said Collins. ”We’ve spent four years trying to get promoted and the last thing you want is to throw it away.

“The first thing is don’t get relegated and then let’s just see what we can do. Let’s just see our football and the way we play gets us and see what we can achieve.

“You won’t get relegated or win the league by Christmas. Let’s look at it then, see how we’re getting on and if we have to address anything our push it or whatever, we need to do, we’ll look at it.”

And when asked how far he can take the club, Collins replied: “It’s a slowly, slowly job.  Me and Paul have our focus and we know where we need to be but you can only do bit by bit and what we’re good at and what Paul’s been good at, we build a little bit.

“We got the 3G pitch done so that gives you a revenue stream, it gives you a focal point for the whole club. Once you get that and we got the promotion that we were desperate for last season, now we’ve got a new league so we’ve got some excitement, then we’ll look at it and if we need to go again and we’re fortunate enough to be close to that position, which is a tough ask, then we’ll look at it and as a club who knows?

“The new clubhouse will start to make inroads and get planning applications in and sort that, that can turn round pretty quickly.

“You come down here during the day and it’s just lovely to see the amount of youth now. Everyone’s buying into what the first team are doing.  That’s taken a long time to build that.  We’ve done excellently as a club. When I took over four years ago and this is my fifth season to be a bottom of the league, second-from-bottom for five or six years and go eight, fifth, third, first and then hopefully hold our own in the Bostik League.”

Collins was delighted that their FA Cup tie attracted a crowd of 131 to Greatness Park.

“Pleased with that! I didn’t expect that.  Everyone in Sevenoaks is away and it’s a non-season ticket game for us,” he said.

“We’ve been excellent for season tickets, over 300 have gone out, which is incredible. It’s proved the club has brought into what we’re doing. I’m pleased, I didn’t think the crowd would be that high, so I’m pleased with that.

“We want to build this very slowly from the bottom up but without a decent first team playing at a decent level, playing decent football, the rest of it doesn’t work.  We’ve managed to put the first clog in place with the promotion and the pitch and now we’ve got to ride the wave a little bit and see where it takes us.

“We’re under no pressure! We’re a little club in my eyes. Let’s see where we can take Sevenoaks.”

Visit Sevenoaks Town’s website:  www.sevenoakstownfc.co.uk

Sevenoaks Town  v Horsham
Bostik South East Division
Saturday 18 August 2018
Kick Off 3:00pm
at Greatness Park, Mill Lane, Seal Road, Sevenoaks, Kent TN14 5BX