Peterborough Sports manager Jimmy Dean is determined to learn from mistakes and make the city club a force at Evo Stik League level.
It’s been a baptism of fire in Division One South for Sports after back-to-back romps at United Counties level, but a much-needed win at Market Drayton last weekend - the 2-1 success stopped a run of six straight defeats - eased the pressure ahead of a tough home match against Leek Town tomorrow (December 2, 3pm).
Superb goals in the final 20 minutes from Lewis Hilliard and Josh Moreman earned Sports some breathing space at the bottom. They are seven points clear of the one relegation place.
“We showed good character,” Dean said. “And the goals were both worldies. The result was a relief and much-needed, but we have never stopped believing no matter how hard we have found the division.
“It has been tougher than we expected. Teams are ruthless. In the last two seasons it hasn’t mattered when we make mistakes at the back or if we miss goalscoring chances, but this year we have been getting punished. I had three years at step four level with St Ives, but this division has a step three feel to it.
“A big factor has been the number of injuries we’ve had. We had centre-backs, a full-back, a goalkeeper and Jordan Macleod missing at Market Drayton.
“The biggest loss has been centre-back Richard Jones. He’s played two matches this season and we’ve won them both. Hopefully he will be back in a couple of weeks
“We’ve had to change our own style to compete. Most teams have monsters up front, but we will keep at it and if we reach mid-table by the end, which I’m sure we can, it will be a succesful season given all the problems we’ve had.
“Leek will be a big test for us. They have one of the biggest budgets and they will expect to get into the play-offs.”
Stamford AFC host Belper in Division One South tomorrow, while fading Spalding entertain high-flying Alvechurch.