Scott Machin felt Kettering Town’s Evo-Stik Southern League Division One Central title success became a reality on a day of celebration at Latimer Park.
Just over 1,000 fans were on hand to see the Poppies beat play-off hopefuls Bedworth United 2-1 thanks to first-half goals from Elliot Sandy and Brett Solkhon.
The champions were presented with the title trophy immediately after the game and are now preparing to round off a memorable campaign with an away date at Chalfont St Peter next weekend.
And joint-boss Machin was delighted with his players’ “professional” approach as they sealed an 18th win from 22 league matches on their own patch.
“It now feels like we have won the title,” Machin said.
“We have won a tough game and we have been very professional.
“You have to take your hat off to our lads because they are only playing for pride really.
“We owed Bedworth something after we lost there earlier in the season.
“Everything seemed to go our way. The club has been through a lot in recent times and to see so many smiles on faces is fantastic.
“To see the players enjoying the moment with their children and having their pictures taken with the trophy is just wonderful to see.”
Machin revealed the players had been given the week off in the build up to the clash and he was pleased to see them repay the favour with another victory.
“We didn’t train in the build-up to the game,” he added.
“We haven’t taken our foot off the gas all the way through the season and I just felt the players deserved an easier run.
“The lads were relaxed and I think that was the right thing to do. It was right to keep them refreshed and they delivered on the back of it.”
It was revealed after the game that striker Dubi Ogbonna has been offered a week-long trial by Scottish Premiership side Kilmarnock.
That trial is due to start on Friday, meaning Ogbonna will miss the final game of the season at Chalfont.