I want to continue the good work set out by Rob Palmer, says Coney Hall boss Chris Tucker

Friday 06th June 2014
CONEY HALL manager Chris Tucker says the club will be focusing on youth as they make the return to Surrey football.

The Tiepigs Lane outfit finished in fifth-place in the Haart of Kent County League Division One West last season, with 9 wins, 3 draws and 10 league defeats.

They also won the Bill Manklow Inter-Regional Challenge Cup as Tom Smith’s goal sealed a 1-0 win over Borden Village in the Chatham Final.

Tucker, 37, has returned to manage the side in their new surroundings after Rob Palmer joined Southern Counties East Football League side Sevenoaks Town to assist their new manager Micky Collins alongside Julian Leigh and coach Grant Watts.

“Rob Palmer has decided that he will seek a new challenge so Rob’s gone over to Sevenoaks with my best wishes because Rob really turned the club around on the pitch last year,” said Tucker.

“We interviewed a couple of people. We didn’t think they were the right people to take us forward so as it stands I’ll take back over with Colin Coldspring.

“We’ll bring in two coaches, Lloyd Groves, who was the youth manager at Chipstead (the Ryman League Division One South club based in Surrey).

“Lloyd has got a wealth of experience with youngsters and they went on a very good FA Youth Cup run at Chipstead.

“And we’ve also brought in Mark Cecile so those two are going to come in as coaches.

When asked the reasons behind the club switching leagues, Tucker replied: “We’re going to focus mainly now on the youngsters, bringing some youngsters through.

“In terms of that we’ve resigned from the Kent County League. We’ve done that a few weeks back on the presumption that we weren’t going to have a Saturday side.

“The presumption was we was going to let the ground out on Saturday and after speaking to a couple of people who felt it would be ridiculous if the Saturday side would fold.

“I can’t do every Saturday so the four of us are going to share responsibility for Saturday, but we are going to move back to Surrey.

“We’re going into the Surrey South East Combination and that will hopefully lead us to the Surrey Elite.

“It’s easier for these youngsters to travel. We’re going to have a lot of 16, 17 and 18 year-olds and the furthest they go in the Combination is Colliers Wood.

“Even though we play in West Wickham a lot of our players we’re trying to attract come from the Croydon area and the transport links are much better than going out towards Kent.”

Tucker revealed that there will be Kent County League football played at Tiepigs Lane next season, with FC Elmstead continuing their ground share deal.

“Yes, they’re going to be there,” said Tucker.

“We’ve got a very good relationship with them, they’re excellent. Perfect in every sense of the word.”

Tucker, meanwhile, is keen on progressing the club again after the platform built by former Bromley coach Palmer.

“At the minute I just want to make sure that we continue the good work that was set out by Rob last season,” he said.

“I’ve always supported the club and it could progress to go high and I’m hoping to climb back up the ladder basically.”

Visit Coney Hall’s website: www.pitchero.com/clubs/coneyhallfc