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Note that this page is from our Gresley Rovers archive.
It may not be related to the new club Gresley FC.
Story posted: Wednesday, 14th August 1991

Such a hard act to beat
Story courtesy of
Gresley boss Frank Northwood approaches the start of another season faced with the problems all successful soccer managers face: “Where do we go from here?”
After last terms’ record-breaking run of success – runaway West Midlands League champions, Derbyshire Senior Cup winners for the fourth successive year and FA Vase Wembley finalists – there is very little Northwood and his men can do to improve.

The veteran boss also knows he has to gee up his troops for another crack at the West Midlands League – when everyone in the club was hoping to be in the Beazer Homes League.

Yet Northwood is relishing the challenge, insisting: “I think it will be a very hard season for us – but anyone who wants to win a trophy will have to beat us first.”

Northwood has been around long enough to know winning a championship is one thing, but retaining one is another.

“They’ll all be out to get us, without a shadow of a doubt,” he says. “But obviously think we’re in with a great chance of having another successful season.

“We could even go one better than last year and actually win the Vase – after all we’re already in the last 64. And we can also dream! I would love to think that we could get through to Wembley again.

“Realistically, though, we have to take each game as it comes, as we have always have done. There are no predictions at this stage.”

Northwood has already come up with one major achievement without a ball being kicked in anger – by persuading the majority of last season’s squad to stay with the club.

Long-serving defender John Bottomley and midfielder Andy Moore have departed but to offset that Northwood has secured the services of former Wolves defender Stuart Evans and ex-Burton Albion playmaker Ryan Venning.

The veteran boss pinpoints Rushall Olympic, big-spending Malvern Town and relegated Willenhall as possible title rival, along with perpetual “nearly men” like Oldbury and Lye Town.

“There have been some good signings made during the summer and a lot of clubs fancy their chances,” he says.

“Willenhall, for example, reckon they’re going to bounce straight back into the Beazer Homes League.

“Well, I can tell them this – we’re going to have something to say about who wins the title.”
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League Position
  Team P GD Pts
6 Brighouse Town 7 3 11
7 Stamford AFC 7 2 11
8 Lincoln United 8 2 10
9 Sheffield FC 7 0 10
10 AFC Mansfield 6 -1 10
11 Gresley 8 -4 10
12 Stocksbridge Park Steels 8 -6 10
13 Tadcaster Albion 7 -1 9
14 Loughborough Dynamo 7 1 8
15 Wisbech Town 6 -1 8
16 Belper Town 7 -4 8

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