Lee Milton is closing in on his first anniversary as Huntingdon United manager – and it’s been quite a year for the club.
Milton took charge of a club on its knees last October. A lack of players on the pitch, a lack of officials off it, and a shortage of funds all added up to a tough predicament.
But Milton masterminded a steady upturn in form and United comfortably climbed into the safety of mid-table in Division 1B of the Cambs League.
And now, in the current campaign, they’ve kicked on again with a perfect start stretching to seven matches in all competitions.
Milton said: “The club was really struggling for personnel on and off the pitch, and also for finances when I agreed to take over as manager.
“They weren’t managing to get a side out every week and were being hit with points deductions by the league.
“We’ve come a long way from that position but we are not the finished article by any means.
“We’re certainly well on the way to getting where we want to be, though.
“Sometimes you just have to roll your sleeves up and work hard to turn things around, and that’s what we’ve done.
“I’m also fortunate to have been able to call on a lot of people who all sing off the same hymn-sheet as I do.”
United have won their opening five Division 1B matches to power into top spot and they’ve also safely negotiated the opening two rounds of the Creake Charity Shield.
They beat Fenstanton 4-0 in the knockout competition last Saturday when Aaron Petty, Tommy Evans and Carl Foreman added second-half strikes to a Dom Everett opener before the break.
United face a big derby date this Saturday when they make the short trip to Houghton & Wyton in a clash of two of the top three teams in Division 1B.
The villagers have made a smart start to their first-ever season at this level and Milton is bracing himself for a stern test.
He added: “I have a lot of respect for what Houghton & Wyton, and their manager Steve Jeffs, have achieved.
“Their rise through the league should be applauded. They always seem able to recruit players every season and kick on again.
“We know a lot of their lads and we’ll be expecting a tough game, but hopefully it will also be an exciting one.”
Huntingdon United also now boast a reserve side who have made an encouraging start to life in Division 5B under the management of Danny Smith.
They recorded a second successive win last Saturday when Ben Heath and Steven Hiscock both struck twice in a 6-0 win at Benwick Athletic Reserves. Jamie Bridges and Connor Gordon hit the other goals.