There is no doubt that Hednesford Town supporters will be extremely pleased by the news that manager Rob Smith has committed his future to The Pitmen by signing a new two year contract to stay at Keys Park until 2015.
Smith led his team to an unprecedented treble comprising the Staffordshire and Birmingham Senior Cups plus the Evo-Stik Northern Premier Division Play Off Final and The Pitmen will begin their first campaign in the Conference North since 2006 safe in the knowledge that their influential boss is here to stay.
Smith talked of his delight at reaffirming his loyalty to Hednesford and was in no doubt that the attitude of both his squad and the supporters were a major factor in his decision.
‘This squad have been a joy to work with and I was very keen to continue in the development of my team at what is a very appealing standard of football. I am also very content at the club, everyone has been great to me ever since I joined. The people at the Club and the supporters are superb.’
Smith was also buoyed by the news that his previous assistant Larry Chambers will return to the dug out after taking a year long break from the game, with fan favourite Chris Brindley being retained as part of the coaching staff after deputising so ably during the past year.
‘The decision to bring Larry back into the fold was an easy one. He has been my right hand man for twelve years and instrumental in many of the current signings. Also Chris was a great help to me last year and very popular with the players so having them both on board, as well as Steve Wynn, will mean we have a very strong and experienced management team going into the new season. ‘
On his team’s chances ahead of a new campaign, which will see the likes of Telford and Stockport County visiting Keys Park, Smith was cautious but confident that, with the continued support of the passionate Hednesford fans and some hard work by the players, his side can more than hold their own and build the club both on and off the pitch.
‘The players will have a chance to prove themselves in the division. I hope and expect them to step up to the mark. I think we need to establish ourselves in the league over the next two seasons but ensure that each year we progress both on and off the field.
‘I am ambitious and never rest on my laurels but I know this is going to be a very challenging but very exciting season for the Club. We are undoubtedly going to have more downs than we did last season, so we are going to need the fans’ backing more than ever, but I can promise we will give our all to try and achieve more success.’