Abbley ready to back Hughes for life in the Premier Division

IT may have been more than a week since Cirencester Town created club history by winning the Southern League Division One South and West title, but the smiles on their faces still remain.

And as plans are being drawn up for life in the Premier Division once more, chairman Steve Abbley is keen for the the club nto to make the same mistakes.

“We will obviously give lots of thought to what approach we are going to take, but one mistake we made in that division last time was not building from the back,” Abbley said.

“The strikers are better at each level you climb and it is so important to get your back five right.

“(Manager) Brian (Hughes) has already done that this season, bringing in the likes of Glyn Garner, Leigh Henry and Chris Holland who had all played at a higher level.

“If we can keep this team together from the goalkeeper forward, I think we will do much better.”

For Abbley it was only his second title as chairman in 19 years, although there have been other promotions along the way.

“We won the Hellenic League while we were still at the old ground in 1996, my second year in charge,” he said. “I have had my wings clipped since then.”

But he is happy to give the credit to his manager – a friend he has known for 35 years and for whom he will be best man later this month.

“All the best friends I have made and kept have been through sport,” insisted Abbley. “I first met Brian in 1979 at Swindon Town when he was a 16-year-old apprentice and I had recently signed as a pro aged 21.

“He left for Torquay and I went on to Cheltenham where we teamed up in 84 and have been great mates ever since.

“The most important person in any team is the manager and Brian has as good a record as anyone at this level or even higher.

“He has the great ability to assess what is wrong and what’s needed to put it right. I’m rubbish at that.

“I truly believe all his ambitions in football can be achieved at Cirencester Town.”

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