Positive attitude of team has impressed manager

Peter Duffield
Peter Duffield

Belper Town manager Peter Duffield says he is feeling positive about the forthcoming season forthe Nailers.

Duffield says that he and the players are keen to bounce back from the disappointment of last month’s Evo-Stik League Division One South play-off defeat and their response in the aftermath of that setback has given him great encouragement for the challenges that lie ahead.

He said: “I am looking forward with a positive manner to the season.

“I always wear my heart on my sleeve and I was obviously very disappointed after that play-off defeat, but I’m resilient and I think we can come back strongly from that setback.

“I always say that, although I wasn’t the best player in the world, I was determined.

“For example, if I missed a chance, I’d get back in there as quickly as possible and try to get on the end of the next one.

“I came back from four broken legs in my career to keep playing so I’ve always had resilience and desire to succeed, and that’s no different now that I’m a manager.”

He continued: “We were all gutted after that defeat because after the first 20 minutes, we just didn’t turn up and the lads held their hands up to that.

“But I had a meeting with them all, individually, a few days later, and the positive attitude from them was great.

“They want to do it right this time round and so do I.

“I got a really good feeling from them and that bodes well for next season.”

As far as new additions to the squad are concerned, Duffield admitted: “ We are certainly talking to players at the moment, but it’s early days yet so there’s not much more I can say at this point in time.

“The lads will return to training at the end of June and then the first friendly is on July 17 with the season starting a month after that.

“The lads here certainly got the right mentality when it comes to keeping themselves fit in the meantime.

“Footballers these days often virtually live in the gym and know what to do during the summer months to stay fit.”

The first of those pre-season games will be at home to Chesterfield on July 17, a match that formed part of the deal that took keeper Aaron Chapman to the League Two a fortnight ago.

Peter Duffield concluded: “It will be a good way to start the pre-season games and Chesterfield are going to bring down a first team side, as they will in future seasons, as part of the move. We hope Aaron will get some minutes against us, and we all wish him well because not only is he a good player, he’s a lovely lad too.”