New-look Town must gain promotion at first attempt

Matt Maclean is one of 15 new faces at Town this season

Matt Maclean is one of 15 new faces at Town this season

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Eastbourne Town boss John Lambert says that promotion is the minimum requirement for his side this season.

Lambert took the reins at the Saffrons midway through last season and was powerless to prevent the free-fall which saw Town finish bottom of the Ryman South and relegated to Sussex County Division One.

But after a busy summer he has brought in no fewer than 15 new players and he believes they are all set to bounce back at the first attempt.

“We’ve got a decent squad and if we don’t go up I’ll be bitterly disappointed,” Lambert said.

“Last season we had about five or six really good players but this year I’ve got a much more balanced squad and a better all-round team.

“I think we can go on and win this league but it’s all well and good saying it, we have to go and do it.”

Many have Town down as the clear favourites for the league. And while the boss is confident, he knows being favourites brings about its own problems, and he’s prepared to take the flak if things don’t go their way.

“The main problem we’ve got is complacency,” he added.

“It’s up to me to ensure the players don’t get complacent and if we don’t manage promotion it is entirely my own fault.

Town kick off their campaign at Dorking Wanderers on Saturday. Dorking finished a respectable eighth last term and Lambert is expecting a tough test. They will then look forward to the first home game of the season on Tuesday (7.45pm)with mouthwatering fixture against local rivals Hailsham Town.