I’m setting that target of looking at that fifth spot and trying to chase that, says Thamesmead Town boss Tommy Warrilow
THAMESMEAD TOWN boss Tommy Warrilow says he wants to go into the last game of the season with something to play for.
Warrilow was out of the game for the whole of last season after pulling off The Great Escape to keep Cray Wanderers in the Ryman League the previous season.
Warrilow won all of his last 10 games in charge of Cray Wanderers, which was a club record but he suffered a crushing 5-0 defeat to Vanarama National League South side Dartford in his first game in charge of The Mead yesterday.
The game kicked-off at noon due to a wedding at the venue and Ben Francis helped himself to a hat-trick, with other Dartford goals coming from winger Ellis Brown and former Crystal Palace and Reading Academy prospect Amadu Waritay.
Thamesmead Town begin their Ryman League Division One North campaign with a home game against Heybridge Swifts on Saturday 13 August, before travelling to Thurrock three days later – the same two sides that Terry Spillane started with last season.
“Ironically enough when I walked in at Tonbridge we were bottom of the Ryman Premier League with Heybridge Swifts so my time starts here for Thamesmead is against Heybridge Swifts. Hopefully it’s a lucky omen,” said Warrilow.
“If I can do what I did at Tonbridge, I’ll be more than happy.
“We’ve got a few things to address off-the-pitch regarding the club itself.
The lads I’ve got here are good players and some of them are experienced. They’ve all been around and that’s why I thought we’d get a bit more yesterday. I’m not taking anything away from Dartford, they’ve got a great squad there.
“All I want to do come the end of the season, I want to be in the play-offs. I’m not going to say we’re going to win it but everyone will say that, it’s just lip service but I’ve always wanted to be as competitive as possible, with what I’ve got.”
Club officials confirmed yesterday that Warrilow has a lower budget than his predecessor Spillane, one that is suited to a mid-table side.
But Warrilow doesn’t settle for second best and said:” I think we can perhaps make the play-offs if we get organised and we can do better. I just want to make the season, when we go to that last game, I want something on it and that keeps it alive for everyone and also you want to improve on last year, so they finished 10th last year and we want to improve on that.
“I’m setting that target of looking at that fifth spot and trying to chase that.”
Warrilow used 16 players against Dartford yesterday, one being his son Reece, 21, who came on as a 63rd minute substitute.
“Reece came down, I just said to him come and do a pre-season. He’s 21, he’s raw, he’s a forward. I’ve seen him play a couple of times but he’s just very, very raw, he’s a handful. All I want him to do is a pre-season and if he done well I was going to give him a SCEFL team or something like that. He’s done well in training. It took the boys four or five sessions to realise he was my son, which was nice because they treated him like normal and he’s done ok. He’s just as raw as anything.”
Warrilow takes his side to Longmead Stadium to play Tonbridge Angels on 30 July in Jon Heath’s Testimonial match.
“Looking forward to seeing everyone down there, I’m glad Heathy’s got something,” added Warrilow.
The Mead continue their pre-season campaign with another couple of National League South sides coming down to Bayliss Avenue in the shape of Ebbsfleet United (Tuesday) and Welling United on Thursday.
The club have chosen to play their midweek home games on Tuesday nights this season after playing on Monday nights and attracting larger crowds last season. This is to give players’ more recovery time after weekend games.
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