Duncan Milligan believes the final stages of Worksop Town’s campaign could be a crucial learning curve in preparation for an assault on promotion next season.
Milligan took over as manager in February and has overseen a mixed start to his Tigers career, at a time when new ownership has taken control of the club and with his tem highly unlikely to be promoted or relegated this season.
And Milligan feels that rather than there being a ‘dead rubber’ feel to the end of the season, it will instead be a period of time where he can assess what is required ahead of next year.
He said: “It’s a good time to come in because we can have 15/20 games learning the league, what kind of players we want to recruit and perhaps most importantly which of our current squad have the quality and desire to be here next season and be part of what I intend to be a promotion-challenging side.
“The focus has always been on next season, and indeed having a good pre-season ahead of that, and that in turn has made this campaign really important even if we’re not going up or down.
“When I was appointed it was a real privilege to be given the opportunity and it’s not one many coaches will get, to be in charge of a club like this, but it will be very much a step by step progress.”
Milligan says he has regular contact with the Tigers board and is keen to introduce as much of a professional approach as he can to the semi-professional environment.
“I am in contact with the secretary, chairman and managing director all the time,” he said.
“We all want to progress the club forward to get it back to where it deserves. Those who put so much effort in deserve that as well as the fans.
“We won’t be paying out the biggest money, but we have so much else to offer good players and are also bringing through some very talented academy prospects too, so the signs are good.
“As much as we’re learning now, we’re also keen to get to the summer and start fully implementing what we want to do. We’ll have six to eight weeks to work properly on tactics and fitness which will get us in good shape, as well as structure the squad as desired.
“It’s an exciting time. I’m confident the club is going in the right direction and will be making some massive statements of intent before too long.”