Thompson wants to create history as Beverley target title and NCEL football

Humber Premier League

Beverley Town manager Mike Thompson

Mike Thompson has his eyes firmly fixed on guiding Beverley Town to the Humber Premier League title and into Toolstation Northern Counties East League for the first time in the club’s history during 2022.

The dream of NCEL football is edging closer to becoming a potential reality for Beverley.

Beverley have planning permission for the ‘golden ticket’ floodlights and the club is working to fundraise £30,000 in match funding to secure the grant which will put the spades in the ground.

Thompson says if Beverley make the jump to Step 6 then 2022 is the greatest year in the club’s history.

“We get in the Northern Counties and it will be the highest level of football the club will have ever played at,” Thompson told Non League Yorkshire.

“Without a doubt, a promotion year would be the best year the club has ever had.

“You look at we’re doing and we have had one defeat in a calendar year.

“The football club on-the-pitch is outstanding, we are doing extremely well.

“If we can become a back-to-back-winning championship side, we’re emulating what the club did several years ago under Dave Ricardo and that was a fantastic team.

“Dave was unfortunate that the club wasn’t ready to progress.

“We’re looking to emulate that and it has been a quiet period for the club since then.

“There has been a lot of work done behind the scenes.

“The pitch improvements of 2018 got the pitch to a fantastic standard and this is the next step.

“When I took the job I wouldn’t have jumped at just anything to leave Bridlington Town.

“There had to be a project and potential to progress into the leagues I know which is the Northern Counties.

“This was a project I could see working.

“The desire from the committee and board was all there, it was just getting over the line with the funding and the floodlights.

“We’re so so close now.”

Beverley are busy trying to source sponsors for the project and Thompson says it is not just about the first team as the floodlights will transform the facilities for the whole community.

“Everyone is not far from being attached to someone who could be attached to this club, in respect of men’s football, junior football and ladies football,” he said.

“There’s a real appetite for this movement and I think that’s the difference.

“The appetite eight or nine years wasn’t there to move on.

“It is now on so the work the volunteers are doing behind the scenes is brilliant.

“The committee applied for the Northern Counties in December.

“We have had numerous ground grading meets and there’s a little bit of work to do which is all within our control.

“There’s a little bit of hard standing that needs adding around the stand we have already got and behind one of the goals.

“I think the main crux of the fundraising is to match some of Football Stadia Improvement grant we are looking to apply for (for the floodlights).

“We’re looking to engage businesses and work with the local business community.

“There’s a community feel to everything we are doing.

“We have a big fundraising campaign going at the moment and we had a superb sponsors for the East Riding Cup first round which attracted 150 businesses and people down to the ground.

“That sort of engagement is key to us.”

Jubilant Beverley Town celebrating their 2021 Humber Premier League title triumph
Bridlington Town striker Chris Adams is one of Beverley Town’s star men

Aside from the lights, Beverley have to do their bit on-the-pitch to be in the pool of promotion hopefuls from Step 7.

Beverley currently sit top of the Humber Premier League with 32 points, seven of South Cave United who have two games-in-hand.

Thompson is thrilled with how the season has panned out and identifies January as a key month because of one fixture.

“We try our hardest to try and look after ourselves and we had a little blip between September and November,” he said.

“We had a few frank words with the boys about the quality we have got and where we should be in the table.

“The boys have reacted really well since then.

“We have played more games than everyone else and we find ourselves at the top of the league.

“Saturday’s win at Pocklington Town has given us a seven point buffer so from my point of view we’d have rather have points on the table than games-in-hand.

“It is a three or four horse race (for the title) in my opinion and it is a lot closer than last year which is credit to other teams.

“Our big one is when we play South Cave in a few weeks.

“It will be a really competitive game and no disrespect to other teams but I look at South Cave and they have the kind of quality we have got.

“It is early days and it is a game in January but looking at the cold hard facts since we drew with each other we have been winning games.

“They have won five on the bounce and so have we.

“It is a big, big game.

“I’d never say it is a title decider in January with the amount of games left but if we win the game, and with the buffer we have got at the top of the league at the moment, we could be hard to knock off.”

The ex-Bottesford Town and Bridlington Town player places a lot of praise at the whole team rather than individuals.

“Since the blip we have had a five-game winning streak,” he said.

“We have had four clean sheets on the bounce and we have been scoring five+ goals per game.

“I’m really happy with our quality.

“The boys are buzzing and the way we are playing, the shape, the style suits everybody.

“We even have lads coming off the bench and impacting games.

“Charlie Dunkerley came off the bench at 2-1 on Saturday and had a hand in the other three goals.

“He scored one and assisted two.

“That’s the type of quality we are looking.

“We have bought in as a collective and I say to the lads regularly and I’m a broken record but I say ‘we won’t win anything with eleven, we have to have 16’.

“We have had lads come through the reserves set-up.

“Joe Norton started the season with the reserves and he’s come in and scored six goals in eight games.

“As a collective, we’re doing really well.”

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