Houghton excited by challenge of managing Goole

Toolstation NCEL Premier Division 

New Goole AFC manager Simon Houghton

Simon Houghton is excited about the challenge of managing Goole AFC and thrilled to be taking charge of a club with a huge fan-base.

The former Pontefract Collieries chief has dusted the cobwebs off his winter hat and trainers after he was hoisted into the hot-seat earlier this week, ending a two-year sabbatical from the game.

Houghton’s last role was joint manager of Nostell Miners Welfare with Jason Dodsworth and circumstances prevented him returning earlier.

“As you get older you get to know what you want and I was looking for a club nearer home because I have moved (to North Yorkshire),” Houghton told Non League Yorkshire.

“That’s why I have been out of the game for the last couple of years.

“There’s been the pandemic, a house move, I’ve changed job role so I needed to get everything sorted and then it was about waiting for the right club and opportunity to come along.

“Logistically Goole fits 100%.

“They are fantastically supported and the history is fantastic.

“It is a proper Non League football club with a magnificent fan-base.

“If we start to do well I can only imagine that the fan-base will grow even bigger.

“I wanted to be at a big club with big support where there is the pressure of the big support as well.

“That gets my adrenaline going.

“Goole is the right club and it has come at the right time.

“But I make no bones about it that it is going to be hard.”

Simon Houghton during his joint manager tenure at Glasshoughton Welfare

Houghton’s first task is to lift Goole out of the relegation zone. 

Saturday’s win at Bottesford Town ended a long winless run and breathed life into their new.

“There’s only one way to go,” he said.

“There has been improvement in the performances in the last two games.

“They got a good win last Saturday but there’s certainly some work to be done and we need to get out of the relegation zone and start climbing that table as fast as we can.

“We have games-in-hand but we have to win them.

“Goole shouldn’t be where they are.

“The players at the club are better than the league table suggests.

“I’ve got a target in mind about where I want us to be at the end of the season.

“I touched on getting out of the relegation area but we need to put a good run together between now and the end of the season because that’s the springboard for next season.

“We need to make sure we stay in this Division and keep going.”

Simon Houghton was previously the manager of Shaw Lane Aquaforce

Houghton says he is impressed with the work Mike Carmody and Alan Jackson have done and he does not plan to perform a major refit to the squad.

There are some holes to fill as defender Josh Dacre and striker Brad Kerr have left.

“Mike and Alan have put some great foundations down and have made (the job) appealing,” he said.

“Goole have great support and is a sleeping giant but if you don’t have the foundations it doesn’t count for much.

“Mike has put those foundations in and brought some good lads to the club.

“I think we are on the short side squad-depth quality-wise so we have to look to add a few faces.

“I don’t think there needs to be a massive overhaul as defensively and in midfield I think there’s some good lads.

“There’s a couple of good players who are injured at this moment in time so we will look forward to bringing them back into the squad.

“Like any new manager you want to bring in your own players but that’s not the case.

“It is not a case of bringing a player in, it is about bringing the right player in.

“Everyone who is there will be given an opportunity.

“I went to watch them at Winterton and I saw potential in nearly every player on the pitch and I’m going to do my upmost to get more out of them.”

Goole host Silsden this weekend.

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