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Lovell delighted to join The Bay
Lovell delighted to join The Bay

Herne Bay have started their rebuilding job after relegation from the Isthmian Premier Division with the announcement that Steve Lovell will be tasked with steering the Bay back at the first time of asking.

The Welshman who left Ramsgate when they looked set for promotion themselves, will again have son Mark in the dugout with him and has been talking to KSN about his excitement at taking the reins at Winches Field.

“It’s a challenge that I’m looking forward to,” Lovell told us, “it’s a great club with great people! Sam Callinder has come in as Chairman and has really worked hard to try and turn the club around and I’m pretty sure that with help from people around him, it will continue to do so.”

“It’s now easy to go into any club when you’re down the bottom and struggling, but all you can do is to go in and try your best.”

“The circumstances didn’t work out for Kevin (Watson), but that’s got to be behind the club now and we’ve just got to focus on what’s happening going forward and try and put the smiles back on supporters’ faces as they’re a great bunch – they support the club in numbers, and we’ve got to make sure that they enjoy coming into the ground and watching football again.”

Reflecting on his sudden departure from Southwood last season, Lovell admitted that it had come as a surprise and a big blow.

“It came out of the blue if I’m honest,” he said, “we didn’t think that there was any reason for it – we’d been around the top of the League all season.”

“The boys seemed happy; we had a good run of results – I think we’d lost twice in ten games – it was a weird one!”

“It was quite a shock as I’d just won manager of the month two months running, but there you go – that’s what they wanted to do and that’s what they did.”

“But these things happen as people have their reasons for doing it and we’ve got to respect that, even if at the time I didn’t!”

“These things happen in football and what happens in the past stays in the past and it’s a new chapter now for everybody – we’ll just carry on and what happened now doesn’t matter. Nothing surprises me in football anymore…”

Looking ahead to next season after the make-up of the SouthEast division was announced on Monday, last season will stand the Lovell pair in good stead for the new campaign.

“Most of the clubs we’ll be facing are still in the League and you come across players and teams who you have before.”

“But the main thing for me is getting a squad together that will compete at this level – whether it’ll be with some of the boys from last year or a completely new squad – hopefully we will get the squad that I’m happy with, that will be a mix of youth and experience.”

“The main thing will be that players want to come and play football and come for that reason and that reason alone!”

“I need to know quite quickly who wants to stay and who wants to go so that I can build a team around the players that we have. It’s going to take a while and quite a while for me to get the squad together and the Herne Bay supporters may have to be a little bit patient as I’m not going to jump into players for the sake of it.”

“I’m going to try and get a team together that challenges next year!”