Our aims are to consolidate and finish the best we can, whilst improving on last season, says K Sports' joint-manager George Batten

Wednesday 27th July 2022

K SPORTS joint-manager George Batten says he is expecting another hard campaign in the Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division.

The Aylesford based outfit finished in the bottom four last season and lost numerous players to rival clubs.

The Batten brothers, George and Ian, took charge of the Paperboys’ last five games of last season, losing four of them, following the departure of Barry Morgan, who worked miracles to keep the club in the ninth-tier of English football without a playing budget.

“Last season got tough from December onwards for the club.  We came in at the end of the season and wanted to stabilise things and then make improvements this season,” said Batten.

“We have only kept three or four players from last season’s squad, so it’s been wholesale changes, some forced, some not.”

Gravesend-based side Punjab United are the visitors’ to Cobdown for Saturday’s opening clash.

Their manager, Chipie Sian has already thrown his hat in the ring when it comes to challenging for promotion this season.

“Punjab will be difficult. I’ve heard they are looking to push on this season.  I like their club and I hope they achieve their aspirations this season,” said Batten.

“We’ve done our homework and it will be up to the players to carry out the job to beat them on Saturday.

“Our aims are to consolidate and finish the best we can, whilst improving on last season. A cup run would be great for the club and is an aim.”

Ernie Batten – George and Ian’s father – guided Sheppey United to the quadruple last season and join runners-up Chatham Town in the Isthmian League South East Division this season.

“The league itself will be harder than ever.  With the absence of Sheppey and Chatham, people think there’s an opportunity to challenge.  Instead of two teams that are clear favourites, we may see seven or eight strong teams all thinking they are in with a chance of promotion,” added George Batten.

“In our opinion that makes the league stronger and it will be a good league to be involved in.”

K Sports  v  Punjab United
Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division
Saturday 30 July 2022
Kick Off 3:00pm
At Cobdown, Station Road, Aylesford, Kent ME20 6AU