Pre-season fears realised but Ford now looks ahead

Charlie Hawtin has signed a contract with Banbury United
Charlie Hawtin has signed a contract with Banbury United

Banbury United manager Mike Ford admitted some his of pre-season fears had been realised as he looked back on the first half of the Evo-Stik Southern League campaign.

The Puritans boss always feared the second season syndrome could play a part in his side’s campaign following a super return to the premier division. That certainly didn’t look to be the case after United won their opening six games but, looking at where those clubs are now, it was clear to see things would get more difficult.

I was always concerned about the second season syndrome before it started

Puritans boss Mike Ford

They did, especially with some of the bigger hitters making their mark, but Ford has been more concerned by his side’s inability to see off the mid-table sides and feels much of that has been down to a lack of application.

Ford said: “I was always concerned about the second season syndrome before it started. To some degree with dealt with that by winning the opening six games but we’ve endured second season syndrome in some games when we don’t appear to be motivated enough.

“I want to try and get this football club as high up the premier division as possible. I’m not accepting a mid-table finish, even if that is where we end up because I look at this club as one which should finish a lot higher.”