Champs set to party into the night

By Mark Pritchett in Football

WELLINGTON’S soccer manager Clive Jones reckons his side’s success in winning the first division of the Toolstation League “betters anything I have done in football.”

Jones’ boys clinched the championship on Saturday when they beat Radstock Town 2-0 away which meant they finished four points ahead of Hengrove, their biggest rivals for the title.

Fortunately, Hengrove only drew but they could have won the title if they had been victorious and Wellington had lost.

Jones was a talented non-league player and went on to enjoy 15 successful years managing Willand Rovers in the Toolstation League.

“I don’t think anyone expected us to win the league - and we did it without spending a penalty,” said Jones.

“I’m chuffed for everyone - the players, supporters, the club, everybody. I think our success was due to the spine of the team - right from goalkeeper through the middle to up front. We had players everywhere in the team who could contribute. And at the end we had a squad at Radstock of 18 players - all of whom were good players. Sometimes we’ve been down to only 13.

“The race for the title was always in our hands. We didn’t have to rely on someone else.

“Looking back I think we won the championship in September. We had nine successive away games at the start of the season.

“We got through these pretty well and ended the season unbeaten at home in a league match That’s something I’ve never achieved before.”

Jones, who has twice won the Devon County Cup and the Les Phillips Cup twice with Willand, and steered Rovers to the last eight of the FA Vase and been named the Toolstation League’s Manager of the Year, said: “I really have to pinch myself that we have won it. No-one thought we could win it by not paying any money.

“The lads have got to enjoy the next couple of weeks. It’s something which doesn’t come around very often. I’m now looking to take the side to a higher level. I loved being at Willand but I have many fond memories of Wellington as a player. It’s what makes this success so sweet.”

Wellington will be holding their end of season presentation night at the Beambridge on Saturday when, no doubt, they will party into the night.

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