Manager Dean Brennan believes that the Tudors have taken a step closer towards professional football after agreeing a new deal to use the Metropolitan Police Bushey Sports Club as their new training base.
The sports centre boasts a host of impressive facilities – including five immaculately maintained grass pitches – and the Hemel players will now be required to train on both Monday and Thursday mornings
Myself and the coaching staff are all backing each other and we firmly believe that this is definitely the way forwardHemel Hempstead Town FC manager Dean Brennan
“We’ve just committed to training at Bushey Sports Centre – the facilities are excellent and the quality of the pitches is unbelievable,” said Brennan.
“We’ve been looking for somewhere new to train for months now and what we’ve got here is access to a gym, as well as pool tables, table tennis and eating facilities so it brings with it the camaraderie that you need to build team spirit.”
Brennan admits that the move to Bushey has come at a cost to his playing budget for the summer, but the Tudors boss believes that the higher standard of facilities will be a big boost to the squad’s chances of achieving promotion next season.
He said: “We’ve got a fantastic rate here – although it is a sacrifice and probably costs us two players from our wage bill. But we definitely think it will be beneficial.
“Our plan has always been to give players no excuses and I want to put last season behind me now because the players had too many excuses.
“This will give us the platform to keep improving.
“We’ve made a big commitment because basically we want to give young players an opportunity at this football club.
“We believe in our coaching and our footballing philosophy as a management team.
“We can’t compete financially with what’s going on in our league because there are about seven or eight teams who just blow us out of the water.
“That means we have to do things a different way.
“We are looking for young, hungry players who have been released, and we will give them the platform to get back into the game. Hopefully they will bring us success with that.
“If you are going to get into the next league, you have to be full-time, and this is a step towards going full-time.
“At the end of the day, it’s my decision to change things so it falls on my head.
“If it doesn’t work, I know that I will get sacked – that’s just how football works.
“But myself and the coaching staff are all backing each other and we firmly believe that this is definitely the way forward.”
One of the major talking points among Hemel fans last season was the state of the club’s Vauxhall Road pitch, and there was talk of installing a new 3G surface over the summer.
However, a recent decision to ban 3G pitches from the National League – formerly the Conference Premier – means that this is no longer an option for the Tudors. Brennan says a new grass pitch is the only way forward for the club.
“A 3G pitch is off the agenda now – the club is telling us that they have ambition and we as a management team have loads of ambition, as everybody knows,” he said.
“The biggest thing that we have to do is stick together now, and the players can have no excuses. We need a better pitch, which apparently is being done now so we are staying positive.
“We need to forget about the season just gone, forget about the two before that, and build a whole new structure at the football club.”