16th Apr, 2021

Clarke aiming high as new faces are targeted by Reds

Ben Tyler 3rd Mar, 2021

Matt Clarke is in good spirits ahead of the new season. Picture: Harish Chavda (Dingle Images).

POSITIVE thinking is rife for many at the moment, with a roadmap out of lockdown offering renewed hope of a return to some semblance of normality in the coming months – and Redditch United manager Matt Clarke is no different with his ambitious plans for the 2021/22 season.

The Reds boss, who will be approaching a year in charge by the time the new campaign gets under way, is reaching for the stars as far as the club’s goals moving forward are concerned.

With the aim of building on the good work done during the short-lived 2020/21 season, in which the club were flying high in sixth after eight games played, Clarke is aiming to continue in a similar vein when play gets back under way.

“You’ve got to be ambitious and I would love nothing more than to lead the boys to the play-offs,” he said.

“I think everyone starts with that intention, but you have to be realistic as we’re still building.

“The intention for last season was just to stay in the league, so I think we’ll probably start with something similar.

“But I think we’ll be looking at those top spots and dreaming, that’s what I say to all the boys, there’s no point coming here to the club just to stay up.

“I think with the squad that we’ve got and the boys we’ll bring in, they’ll be better than that [level of expectation] and will want to have a successful season.

“Certainly I want that, from the outside it will be making sure that we’re in the league and progressing year on year.”

Having brought in Coventry United full-back Lewis Hudson during the current downtime, the Reds manager admits he already has a wishlist of names to bolster his squad further.

“There are targets [in mind],” he added.

“I suppose most managers are the same, you play the season, go to a lot of games at our level and the levels above and below to try and get those gems and we’ve identified a few and made a few enquiries.

“Obviously, it’s a weird conversation because normally the season will have ended, you’d have four to six weeks off and then you’re back in and doing all of your recruitment then – but the season won’t be starting for another six months.

“It’s a tricky one, but we’ve identified a number of targets that we’d like to bring in to enhance what we’ve already got.”

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