Saints manager has a message for his players as they return for pre-season training

AFTER returning for pre-season training last week, St Neots Town's players will have been left under no illusions what is expected of them.

Manager Dennis Greene will have delivered his message loud and clear, as he plots Saints' assault on the Southern League Division One Central crown.

"I expect them to give me 110 per cent every week," said Greene.

"Players have off-days, you can put up with that.

"I can put up with them having a bad game every week, if they give me that commitment.

"But what I won't put up with, is having a bad game and not putting anything in.

"I'll make sure the boys are motivated and carry on that winning mentality they developed last year.

"There were games they could quite easily have drawn or lost last season but the best teams don't give in.

"And, when you have a group that don't want to lose, you get your rewards from that."

On his own managerial style, Greene said: "If you ask the players, they'd probably say I'm reasonably generous and will have a joke with them, but they know when I'm serious.

"I very rarely rant and rave. I'd be all up for losing every week, as long as it's to a better team.

"I'm just not up for losing when the other team is nowhere near as good as us and the players aren't putting it in. That's when you rant and rave.

"But last year that rarely happened, we performed well in most of our games."

Last season's UCL triumph with Saints is without doubt the highlight of Greene's career in management that has so far spanned a decade.

But he admits he had to prove a few doubters wrong along the way - by sticking to his philosophy - which, he said, is the key to success in football management.

"There were people who said to me at the start of last season that we would never win the UCL playing the style of football we do," said Greene.

"But that's exactly what we did. We won the UCL playing football and we did it home and away.

"What you must never give up on being a manager is sticking to the formula you believe in - that's the most important thing.

"When you're having a bad time in football, you've got to keep sticking to what you believe in because if you think what you're doing isn't working and change, then you are going to go down.

"If you're strong enough as a character to stick to what you believe in, then you will be successful."