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CHIPPENHAM TOWN: Collier gets plans in motion at Bluebirds
MARK Collier is determined to make Chippenham Town a club that players want to fight for as he prepares for a summer of rebuilding at Hardenhuish Park.
The Bluebirds signed off their Calor League Southern Premier Division campaign with a 2-1 victory over St Neots Town last weekend, bringing to a close an eventful season that included three managers, a 9-0 home defeat and a career-ending injury for midfielder Rob Dean.
Collier accepts he’s only been able to take small steps forward since he and assistant Tom Jones arrived in November but has targeted a summer of progress to help the team hit the ground running in the 2014-15 season.
“It’s certainly a big football club and it’s needed some pulling together,’’ said Collier.
“We’ve started to do that in bite-size pieces and set ourselves attainable objectives.
“Everyone is trying to progress the club and move it forward. In terms of the team, that means we need to add some experience to the squad for next season.’’
Collier met the players on Tuesday and they have been given until next Tuesday to decide whether they want to stay at the club.
He added: “I am sure there will be some who will want to move on and I’ll respect that. We’ll also look to bring some of our own players, including hopefully two or three from levels above.
“I get the feeling it doesn’t mean enough to play for Chippenham Town and we want to change that. This is a good club, well supported and with a board of directors who want to move forward.’’
Collier was down to the bare bones at St Neots, with the sparingly-used Luke Murden and goalkeeper Ben John, who came on late on to play up front, on the bench.
But his side took the lead midway through the first half as Jake Harris was fouled and Joe McClennan fired home from the penalty spot.
St Neots drew level before half time as Lorenzo Ferrari went around Kent Kauppinen to score, but the winner arrived on 72 minutes as James Guthrie turned on the edge of the area and fired home.
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