Huntingdon Town aren’t going down - but now the focus shifts to staying up on merit next season

Huntingdon Town manager Bob Warby. Picture: HELEN DRAKE

Huntingdon Town manager Bob Warby. Picture: HELEN DRAKE - Credit: Archant

Boss Bob Warby has welcomed Huntingdon Town’s relegation reprieve – but wishes it had come sooner.

Town have dodged the drop from the United Counties League Premier Division despite finishing bottom-of-the-table last season with just eight points to their name.

The promotion of champions AFC Kempston Rovers and the demise of Northampton Spencer has created the two required spaces in the Premier Division to be taken by Division One top dogs Peterborough Sports and runners-up ON Chenecks next season.

It means there is no need for league officials to relegate Town even though they finished 26 points adrift of second-bottom Oadby Town and won only two of their 42 league games.

And Warby, who became Huntingdon’s third boss of last season when taking over in February, is determined to make the most of his side’s lifeline in the top flight.

He said: “We assumed we would be relegated having finished bottom, but we now find ourselves playing in the Premier Division again. It is a challenge we will relish, but I’m a bit annoyed the decision has only just been made.

“We now find ourselves a few weeks behind other clubs in terms of preparations, but I believe in what I’m trying to do at the club – and the lads seem to believe in it as well.

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“First and foremost we need to cut out the basic errors that cost us badly last season. We need to nail our shape and make sure we have the stability to try to win football matches again.

“Hopefully we will be able to make ourselves safe on merit rather than having to rely on a reprieve.”

Town chairman Doug McIlwain echoed the sentiments of his manager.

He said: “We want to play football at the highest level we can and we’re all looking forward to making next season a new start for the club.”

Huntingdon are keen to hear from any goalkeeping coaches who are available for next season. Anyone interested can contact Warby on 07584 245619.