Emley AFC manager Richard Tracey has some words of advice for newly-promoted Golcar United who will be playing in the Northern Counties East League Premier Division for the first time in their history.
The Pewits made the exact same jump up last season and eventually finished ninth in what was a topsy-turvy campaign. However now they have had that learning experience Tracey knows more about what the division is all about, something Golcar will have to learn fast if they are to make a mark next season.
Tracey said: “I think it will be harder for Golcar to come into this division next season than it was for us when we got promoted as the league is much stronger.
“Hallam and North Ferriby, who have been put into our league, are extremely good sides. Then you have the likes of Frickley Athletic and Yorkshire Amateurs who have dropped down, and both have big budgets, so I really do think the league will be a lot tougher next season. It might be a closer division next season as more sides have a chance to beat each other.
“Ash Connor (Golcar joint manager) will have to find out about the opposition at this level. There are new clubs and players for him to research and so that can be exciting but also hard work.”
Emley will host Golcar at the Fantastic Media Welfare Ground on Friday July 1 (7.30) to kick off their pre-season friendlies.
Tracey said: “I’m in contact with Ash and we speak often and there will be a pre-season friendly between the two clubs despite us playing each other in the league.
“Despite being opponents we will still have a lot of respect between the two clubs. When we face Golcar we’ll want to beat them but there will be a friendly touchline atmosphere.
“It’s great that both clubs are in the same division. It’s good for Huddersfield football. The games will hopefully create a good atmosphere at each ground with good attendances which helps both clubs financially.
“Golcar are a good side and we know it will be two competitive league fixtures. Hopefully the people of Huddersfield will get behind the fixture and help to make them games to remember.”
Tracey is confident in Emley’s ability to improve next season, insisting that the Pewits now know the league standard.
He said: “As for us we knew we had the quality but we just couldn’t put the jigsaw pieces fully together last year. However when we did put it together we went on a good run and climbed up the table.
“Something we have to look at going into next season is the injuries we had and why players were unavailable. It was a nightmare last season to be honest in regards to that.
“I think we also have to remember we had a handful of youngsters coming through our academy and they were having to learn the game at this level too.
“We know how we need to improve in this division now and what we need to do to push forward. The standard of the division is only going to continue to improve.”
“I do feel we were a little light last year, if we lost three or four players it made a difference. We managed to stay competitive but we want to be really competitive and that ultimately is what we are aiming for to really challenge those top teams in this league.”