Ottery St Mary targeting a place in the FA Cup

Ottery at home to Buckland Athletic. Ref shsp 06 20TI 7550. Picture: Terry Ife

Ottery at home to Buckland Athletic. Ref shsp 06 20TI 7550. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Ottery St Mary Football Club chairman Mikey Ringer is delighted with the progress being made on and off the Washbrook Meadow pitch, writes Steve Birley.

He says: “During these past few months so much has been achieved in all sections of the club.

“Indeed, it’s fair to say that we are actually in a better position now than we would of been had there not been a lockdown because what it has meant is that we have time to get things done during a period of no football and it’s meant a series of improvements have been undertaken that we have always wanted to get done, but never seemed to be able to find time to do.”

He continued: “I think if we are to learn anything from the past few months then it is that you must always work only to your strengths and with the people that want to give their all and take nothing out.

“These past few months have flown by and we now find ourselves in a position of being well settled and ready for a new season.”

Speaking about the appointment of Billy Rouse as manager, the Ottery chief said: “Appointing Billy was something that I knew would ‘ruffle a few feathers’, but I am very clear that he is absolutely the right man to take us, not just to the next level, but beyond that and ultimately further up the football pyramid.”

He continued: “Billy’s appointment also frees yours truly from his men’s senior team responsibilities and now I can focus fully on the ladies team and I have a very serious goal to achieve and that is to one day be the only club in East Devon with both men’s and ladies’ teams in the national league season and with a club that has facilities to match that level of the game.”

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Turning his attention to more general club thinking the Ottery chairman said: “We currently have every age group covered in our youth system with three senior men’s teams and one senior ladies’ team, but that is nothing compared too what we have planned over the coming years.

“Women’s football is growing rapidly and we are going to be adding to our ladies structure with additional teams in the years ahead.. I want us to champion the fact that we, as a club, look to develop players, not just for this season or the next, but for the long-term good health of the women’s game.”

To round things off, the Ottery chairman said: ““Football is all about goals, be that netting them at the weekend and certainly having targets as goals of achievement as a club.

“Step Six football within two seasons and step five within five - and that’s just the goal for the men. Another ‘goal’ is for us to play an FA Cup tie at Washbrook Meadow. We have the bar raised high, but what is football without goals!”

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