Glover's Poppies will bid to upset the odds in tough opener

Lee Glover insists Kettering Town won’t be “in awe” of title favourites AFC Fylde when the new Vanarama National League North season gets under way this weekend.

Wednesday, 3rd August 2022, 8:46 am
Lee Glover takes charge of his first league game with Kettering Town when they head to AFC Fylde this weekend. Picture by Peter Short
Lee Glover takes charge of his first league game with Kettering Town when they head to AFC Fylde this weekend. Picture by Peter Short

The Poppies face one of the toughest possible starts as they make the trip to the north-west to take on a Coasters team who have been installed as the bookies’ favourites to win the title this time around.

Fylde have invested heavily in their squad once again this summer, having lost to Boston United in the play-off semi-finals last season, including signing right-back Connor Barrett from the Poppies.

On the other side of the coin, new boss Glover has faced a huge rebuilding job at Latimer Park in the closed season after a large portion of last season’s squad, which finished eighth in the previous campaign, departed for pastures new.

Only three players from the 2022/23 campaign – Gary Stohrer, Rhys Sharpe and Decarrey Sheriff – featured in the Poppies squad for last weekend’s 1-0 win at Corby Town in their final friendly of the summer.

But Glover has, slowly but surely, put a new-look squad together.

And he is adamant the Poppies are capable of upsetting the odds this season, starting on Saturday.

“We are looking at it and we are wondering if we can upset a few coupons because I am sure Fylde will be massively odds on,” the Kettering manager said.

“The investment they have had is probably as much as you would see in the National League, we get that but we aren’t crying about it. That’s the competition isn’t it?

“We need to go and test ourselves against them and we are looking forward to it.

“We have got a couple of players who might upset people this season.

“I hope the fans will appreciate the way we will try to play.

“We want to pass the ball when we can and we want people to be creative and we want crosses going into the box.

“As much as we respect Fylde, we aren’t in awe of them. We want to look after our business.”

Kettering’s tough opening-day away game is followed by two successive home matches as they take on Bradford (Park Avenue) next Saturday before then hosting AFC Telford United on Tuesday, August 16.