Aylesbury boss Dave Larham has been reflecting on a successful 2013 for the club but says there is ‘still a long way to go’ as we head into a new year.
Larham has been analysing the Magenta and Blacks’ progression during the last year, particularly this season which sees them sit second in the Southern Counties North League after 10 wins from 12 games so far.
“Our early season form demonstrated the developments we have made as a squad and the improvements we have made as individuals, as units and as a team,” he said.
“We expected to be in the top four at Christmas and have possibly over-achieved in terms of putting together the ten-game unbeaten run.
“We now have to enter the second half of the season with the knowledge that we can compete with the best teams in the league, both home and away, and produce winning performances.
“Unless Bletchley seriously slip up, I think it will be between ourselves, Thatcham, Milton Keynes and possibly High Wycombe for the second-place position.
“That said, I also rate several of the mid-table teams and think they could upset some of the top teams with strong home performances.
“Our defeat to Alchester in December demonstrated that we still have a long way to go with our game understanding, game intelligence and game management.
“Quite simply, if you want to be the best you have to be at your best week in, week out.
“The teams below us will know what to expect and we must win the games that we are expected to win. There is no point putting in huge performances against the top teams if we then allow complacency to creep in against the lower teams.
“I have said nearly every week that we need to be more clinical in our execution, and ultimately I think that will be the difference between finishing second or fourth.
“The league table does not lie, and we have been the second-best team in the league to date. But if we are honest with ourselves, we know that we will have to work a lot harder in training and matches than we did in November and December.
“Whatever happens by the end of April, I can assure everyone that it won’t be through a lack of trying!”