Brown cools expectations at Swifts after eye-catching summer signings

JODY BROWN says it is important to remain realistic about Heybridge’s targets next season – despite the arrival of some top new players this summer.

The return of talisman striker Luke Callander, along with the signings of proven quality forwards Sam Bantick and Harrison Chatting and experienced centre-half Ryan Henshaw, have lifted expectations at Scraley Road.

But manager Brown (pictured above) says it is important to remember the club has only beaten relegation on the final day over the past two seasons and wants to temper expectations heading into a new campaign in the newly branded Bostick League North.

He explained: “First of all I would like to praise our committee from the chairman down for working so hard to provide the resources this summer to allow us to have a stronger squad than we have had in recent campaigns.

“We have brought in some terrific players but I do want to play down the expectations on them. For me, the players we have retained are at least as important to us.

“The reality is we have only survived on the final day for two seasons now so the first aim for next year is to get to that 50 point mark – it’s as simple as that.

“If we have a good campaign and are in touching distance of that top six at the end of March then who knows – maybe we can start setting the bar a bit higher.

“But it is worth remembering it will only take an injury to one of our main strikers to knock us off course.

“And just because you have good players in your side it does not guarantee success in this division anyway. As we have seen many times before.

“So I hope our fans are looking forward to a promising season and we will be doing everything we can to make it a success. But I just want to keep everybody’s feet on the ground for now.”

Swifts currently have a squad of 15 confirmed for the new campaign.

Forward Joshua Fagbohun and keeper Darren Behcet have also been signed, and midfielder Harry Morgan has agreed a permanent switch after his successful loan spell from Chelmsford last season.

Forwards Luke Hornsley, Adam Bolle, Josh Sykes and Ade Yusuff have left the club.

But keeper Danny Sambridge, defenders Marley Andrews, Phil Anderson, Jack Cawley and Guillem Ramon, and midfielders Lewis Dark and Lewis Godbold have been retained.

Development Squad striker George Smith has also been promoted to the first team, and last season’s skipper George Cole is spending pre-season with a Championship club.

Swifts kick-off their pre-season campaign at Essex Senior League side Basildon United on  Saturday, July 8.