Baillie pleased as Poppies’ game plan pays off

Ben Ford grabbed the only goal as Kettering Town beat St Neots Town
Ben Ford grabbed the only goal as Kettering Town beat St Neots Town

Thomas Baillie felt Kettering Town’s game plan worked as they claimed a welcome 1-0 victory over St Neots Town.

Having already been relegated from the Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division following the 4-2 defeat to Chippenham Town last weekend, the Poppies bounced back with a gritty display at Steel Park.

Ben Ford’s free-kick a minute into the second half secured the points while Kettering also secured only their second clean sheet in six months.

And Baillie was pleased to see a change in formation work for his side.

“We like to play good football if we can but we also knew we had to try to stop them playing because they have some very good players, who have been at a higher level before,” the Poppies boss said.

“We wanted to stop them without stifling our own game and I think it worked. Every team will create chances and we could have scored more than we did. We had the game plan and the lads stuck to it. It worked for us and we are happy about that.

“We have played games this season when we have been the better passing team and lost. We have to try to get the best out of the players we have got and we changed the formation in an attempt to do that and it worked for us.

“We have had numerous games where we have got what we deserved whether it be good or bad. And there have been games when we have walked away wondering why we haven’t taken something from it.

“You win any way you can and that’s what we did this time.”

Baillie, meanwhile, confirmed he and his current assistant-manager Dean Thomas have applied for the manager’s job for next season and beyond after the position was advertised by the club this week.

They have applied as a management team and Baillie believes it would be good if they were given the chance to do the job with “a level playing field”.

“Dean and I have applied for the position and we are hopeful we will get the chance,” Baillie added.

“I think we have worked hard when a lot of people wouldn’t have done and the club is still here when many thought it wouldn’t be.

“I think it would be good for us to get the chance to have a go at this when there is more of a level playing field.”