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Clapton’s Andre Thomas admits they will be targeted this season

PUBLISHED: 14:00 10 August 2017

Clapton manager Jon Fowell (left) with assistant Andre Thomas (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo).

Clapton manager Jon Fowell (left) with assistant Andre Thomas (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo).

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

Clapton assistant manager Andre Thomas believes his side will have a target on their chests in the Essex Senior League this season.

The Tons finished last season in fine form and surprised the rest of the league by finishing as runners-up behind champions Barking.

And Thomas believes rival teams will be looking to peg them back and stop them from achieving similar success this campaign.

“This season we’ve got a target on our chest because where Barking got promoted you look at the league and who was there last season, we would have been the highest finishing team, so we have got a target,” he said.

“We found that out against Basildon (in a 2-0 opening-day defeat), where they had done research on our players and we now need to expect that.

“We’re going to have to have secondary and third plans to deal with certain things, otherwise we will get found out.

“It’s difficult because we had what I call a Leicester season, when we look at the history of Clapton and where the team have been throughout our time.

“We have been in the bottom half for the majority of the time until recent years.”

The assistant manager played down any talk of the club winning the Essex Senior League title this time around and admitted they are just looking to do the best they can.

“I don’t want to say we want to win the league, but I’m not going to be pessimistic and say that we can’t do it, I just want to finish as high as we can,” he added.

“We’re just looking to finish as high as we can and go far in cup competitions. The fans deserve it – they love away days to go out to different areas and spread their joy.

“Getting far in cups would always be nice for them and a cup final is always a great day out for all involved.”

The club have lost some key players during the summer in the shape of Johnny Ashman, Dylan Ebeno and Jay Knight, but Thomas believes they have recruited well.

“It looks like as much as we’ve lost good players, we’ve got good players who can also fit into our identity and how we want to play,” he said.

“We have made some solid signings and it is just about keeping them and hopefully keeping them fit and them understanding what we want to do.”

Following a 4-1 league win at Ilford and FA Cup success at FC Clacton, Thomas did admit it would be ‘amazing’ if they could go one better this season and be crowned champions.

“To win the league, especially for the fans would be absolutely amazing,” he said.

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