Badshot Lea expecting battle to hold on to best players
BADSHOT LEA are fully expecting to become victims of their own success this summer – and face a fight to keep hold of their players.
The Baggies have remained among the Combined Counties Premier Division South pace setters all season.
The leaders are starting to pull away – although co-manager Gavin Smith knows anything can happen in the final weeks of the season.
“We haven’t set any real targets this season – to finish in the top five and in touching distance of the top clubs would be a real achievement,” he said.
“We’d like to keep all our players for next season but if I’m honest, I’m not sure that will happen.
“Clubs at higher levels are looking at our players. In one way that’s great, and we’ll try to keep everyone because as a club we want to push on again, but we know other clubs want our players.
“There are four or five who will get tempted to play at a higher level.
“That’s where we are as a club – we don’t have the money to hold on to people, not that I’d want to do that anyway.
“You never know – the players might say they love playing at Badshot Lea and want to stay.”
Smith still hasn’t given up hope of the Baggies pushing for honours this season.
“We can’t give up on the hope something might happen – Beckenham drew on Saturday and we’ve still got to play them twice,” he said.
“I think Jersey will win the title, but if we win our games in hand we will be only three points behind Walton.
“Beckenham are ten points ahead of us so we would need to beat them twice and hope other results went our way.
“You never lose hope or give up, but we want to get back to enjoying watching us play good football again.
“We have to be more ruthless in front of goal.”
The Baggies draw 1-1 at Knaphill at the weekend and Smith said: “We didn’t perform how we know we can.
“We’re not losing – they equalised in the last minute although to be fair, on the balance of play, a draw was a fair result.
“We were a bit disappointed because this was an opportunity missed for us.
“I thought we were in control and I couldn’t see them scoring, although we didn’t look dangerous and didn’t create enough.
“We’re not looking quite as dangerous going forward as we have in the past, and we gave away a sloppy penalty.
“We really needed to win, but I’ve never won there – every game I’ve been involved in there I have lost, so perhaps it’s a positive we got a point.”
The Baggies are at home tomorrow (Saturday), when they will entertain Guildford City (3pm).
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