Like anything in football and in life you will always learn from previous experiences and then return stronger and more prepared for the new campaign, says Holmesdale boss Lee Roots

Thursday 28th July 2022

HOLMESDALE manager Lee Roots says the Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division title race will be impossible to call this season.

The Bromley based outfit finished in twelfth-place last season despite Roots having limited resources at Oakley Road.

“It was pleasing and a rewarding season for us last year.  The club’s first season back in Step Five for over six seasons always presents its own challenges, but as a whole we were very happy with our league campaign,” said Roots.

“We highlighted in the off-season where we fell short across the campaign within certain areas and game situations and like anything in football and in life you will always learn from previous experiences and then return stronger and more prepared for the new campaign.

“I am really delighted with our players recruitment this season and I feel this is the strongest recruitment we have had at this level to date.  We have been very fortunate to sign players that have come in offering Step Four experience and quality, as well as giving further opportunities to existing retained players and promoted development squad players from last season.

“New players in a squad always bring a new energy, new desire and added motivation for the whole group, players and staff.

“We addressed the specific players we wanted to recruit and I am extremely happy to have got these players’ deals done and have them signed at the club for the season ahead.”

Scott Porter brings his Hollands & Blair side to Oakley Road for the opening game.

The Gillingham based outfit finished in ninth-place last season, as well ae reaching the Kent Senior Trophy Final, losing 2-1 to Sheppey United, who celebrated winning four trophies last season.

“We are very much looking forward to the season kick off and I am looking forward to being back in the dug-out on Saturday,” added Roots.

“A very tough challenge waits for us in Hollands & Blair and that is the same with every team you will face within this division.

“We know their ambitions as a club and this will be an extremely tough challenge.  Every game in this league is tough, every team offers quality and every team must be respected and approached in the correct manner, which we have done extremely well with detailed diligence going into Saturday’s game.”

When asked what kind of league he is expecting this season, Roots replied: “The league is impossible to call this year before anyone has kicked off and this certainly was not the case last season with specific teams leading the charts and favourite races for promotion. 

"Every team, manager and club will be saying the same thing at this stage as this is the exciting period before anyone has played, but for us internally, we know exactly how to continue to build onwards and upwards in every game and competition we compete in this year.

“It’s almost impossible to call the league at this stage as the make-up look of this division has changed so dramatically in the last 12 months.  Chatham, Sheppey and Beckenham have now all achieved Isthmian League football status, leaving room for other clubs to stake their claim.

“There is no transfer market or value at this level or in this league and of course it really is about what managers and clubs has the funds to spend, but importantly it is exactly how that money is spent and what value is placed onto the players that will deliver success in the long run.

“I think after 10 or 12 league games the league will start to take shape with certain teams standing out in different ends of the league and it is probably only then will you be able to make cemented predictions on who will be challenging and who won’t be.”

Holmesdale  v  Hollands & Blair
Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division
Saturday 30 July 2022
Kick Off 3:00pm
At 68 Oakley Road, Bromley, Kent BR2 8HG