Robins' chairman aiming high
Monday 13 August
Chairman Dave Mantle is not ruling out another Ilkeston FC Play-off tilt in 2012-13 – although he says consolidation has to be our top priority for this season.
Mantle (pictured) knows full well that the task is likely to be considerably tougher at the higher level, competing against clubs of the stature of Hednesford Town, FC United of Manchester, Blyth Spartans, Stafford Rangers and Saturday’s first game opponents at the New Manor Ground, AFC Fylde.
But he is optimistic that we can compete in the top half of the table and said: “If we can carry the momentum on from last season, who knows where it might lead. We have a lot of the same players to call on and they are all a year more experienced now.”
Added the chairman: “We played Northwich Victoria in the FA Trophy last year, competed and matched them at their ground, but were given a bit of a lesson at home.
“We know from that it is going to be a tough step up and there will be no easy games, but the players have come on since then and they are confident they can do well.
“If we are talking about setting goals then it has to be to go for the Play-offs again. A lot of people say we should be happy with mid-table, but we are ambitious.
“If it is mid-table, that’s fine, but we will be going into it aiming high and I think that’s the way you have to be.”
Mantle is delighted that Kevin Wilson will once again be at the helm to steer the club us into unchartered waters.
He added: “I think it’s a pretty strong relationship that we have. Kevin has done a fantastic job for us and I there is a mutual trust between us.
“Professionally, we don’t always see eye to eye, but we always resolve things and I would like to think that, outside the club environment, we have become good friends.”