Chapman hails his title winners
LOWESTOFT Town manager Micky Chapman is not expecting an easy ride when his side take on Wivenhoe Town at Broad Lane today.The Blues - who have led the table for virtually the entire season - were finally crowned champions on Tuesday night following victory at Mildenhall Town.
LOWESTOFT Town manager Micky Chapman is not expecting an easy ride when his side take on Wivenhoe Town at Broad Lane today.
The Blues - who have led the table for virtually the entire season - were finally crowned champions on Tuesday night following victory at Mildenhall Town.
The north Suffolk side now have a Premier Cup final at Portman Road against Needham Market to look forward to on Tuesday night, however Chapman knows his side have a tough fixture to get out of the way first.
He said: “We're expecting a tough game. They (Wivenhoe) played us a few weeks ago at our place and they were a well organised, well disciplined and physical side. On the night they probably felt they were quite unlucky to lose 2-1. It was a tough game and we had to work very hard to get that result.
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“I think Julian Dicks has done a fantastic job there. When he first came in they were getting beat quite heavily and although it's taken a few games for him to make his mark he's now turned them into a side that are very difficult to break down.
“It is a young side there but they never give up. I guess you could say he has got them playing the way he used to during his career.”
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Chapman - who jointly manages the side with Ady Gallagher - is delighted to have claimed the title with three games to spare.
He said: “We've led the table for most of the season and to be honest it's not easy to stay there and finish the job once you get there. When you're top of the table everyone wants to knock you off your perch.
“We've asked a lot of the players this season and they've really raised the bar in training. Expectations have been really high and the lads have lived up to them.
“We have been the most consistent side and therefore deserve the title. If you win the league you deserve it because it's over the course of the season.
“History shows that any side that gets knocked out in the semi-finals of the Vase do go on and struggle. We lost out next two games and whether that was a cup hangover or not I am not sure, but since then the lads have responded really, really well. We could have fallen apart but we knew that we hadn't become a bad side overnight.”
Elsewhere, in the final round of fixtures for the British Gas Business League, Bury Town could seal a place in the Division One Midlands play-offs today.
Currently sixth place in the league, Richard Wilkins' side will have to beat bottom-place Malvern Town and hope that fifth place Chesham, who have now gone two games without a win, do not win at 13th place Bromsgrove. A draw would be enough for Bury, who have a far superior goal difference to their rivals, should Chesham lose.
Bury are likely to be without Lee Reed following a facial injury sustained on Tuesday, but the rest of the squad should be available.
Meanwhile, AFC Sudbury - who have won five of their last six games - host Marlow to conclude what has been an impressive season of consolidation following a summer of upheaval.
Tottenham legend Ossie Ardiles will be the special guest at King's Marsh Stadium where the club will be trying to break a noise record pre kick-off with their 'yellow bellow'.
Curtis Haynes-Brown has not recovered from the injury he picked up in Tuesday's win, but Sam Clark returns from injury.