Dave King keeping a lid on expectations at Tividale
Tividale boss Dave King admits his side will be there to be shot at this season as he bids to keep expectations in check.
The battle for West Midlands League honours starts on Saturday and Tividale will be among the favourites for title glory following an impressive 2017/18 campaign, writes Nick Elwell.
King’s men finished runners-up to champions Wolverhampton Sporting and, having kept hold of the players who performed so well, many onlookers will be expecting the Packwood Road outfit to go one better.
But King is bidding to play down expectations as he prepares for Saturday’s opening day clash at Smethwick Rangers.
“Because of where we finished last season I think a lot of clubs will see us as a bit of a scalp and we have got to be able to handle that,” he said.
“We have kept all the players from last season, which is good, and added a couple as well.
“This is my third season here. We had a relegation and then finished second last year and we have a good squad.
“We obviously want to be up there, but we have got to be realistic with our expectations.
“We aren’t one of the biggest spenders in the division and there are some good sides around. The league is going to be as testing as ever.”
King has added to his squad by landing Matt Hunt from Midland League outfit AFC Wulfrunians and former Wolves Sporting and Cradley attacker Rion Francis-Mills.
“Matt was with us a couple of seasons ago in the Midland League and I have kept in touch,” said King.
“He is a good player and a good lad, and I have been impressed with him during pre-season.
“His experience will help some of our younger players.
“Rion was at Wolves Sporting last season and then Cradley for a while and it’s good to have him on board. He will add to our attacking options.”
Bewdley Town joint-boss Phil Mullen is targeting another top half finish for next season.
Bewdley finished seventh in the Premier Division but dropped down from fourth earlier on.
The club have made no new signings but have brought in some youngsters from the second team who impressed last season.
Asked for his thoughts on the new season, Mullen, who manages the club alongside Paul Davies, said: “We have been quite pleased with how pre-season has gone.
“There has been some tough games and we are looking forward to kicking off on Saturday (against Dudley Sports).
“We have had a good number of youngsters who have come in to join the squad.
“Hopefully we can finish top half of the table.”