New Dereham Town manager Gusterson pays tribute to the man he replaced
- Credit: Archant
A tough match awaits the new Dereham Town management duo of Adam Gusterson and Olly Willis, with second-placed Heybridge Swifts visiting Aldiss Park.
Managed by former West Ham and Liverpool player Julian Dicks, the Swifts are currently just three points behind leaders Bowers & Pitsea, who they beat 1-0 last Saturday.
However, the Magpies have a good recent record against them and won 3-0 away in the corresponding fixture back in September.
A poor run of form has seen Dereham slip to bottom place and the club decided to act on Sunday as they announced a change at the helm.
New boss Gusterson is excited by the challenges that lie ahead and was also quick to praise the work of departing manager Neal Simmons.
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'I think it is right to start by recognising Neal's contribution,' he said. 'Myself and Olly were part of the team who played for Matt Henman and Neal and won the Thurlow Nunn League and Norfolk Senior Cup under them. Neal's commitment to the club over the years has been fantastic and I'm sure everyone at the club will agree he has contributed significantly to its rise over the years.'
He added: 'We know there is a task on our hands in trying to change the fortunes on the pitch and get ourselves off the bottom and then clear of any relegation trouble. Our short-term remit is very simple and that gives us a clear focus as a group, which we are all fully committed to working towards.
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'We know we have a capable squad and with players hopefully returning sooner rather than later from injury there is definitely enough quality to get us out of the position we currently find ourselves in.'
Dereham have signed Sam Borrer on a dual registration from Gusterson's former side Harleston and he goes straight into the squad. Recent signing Adam Plumstead picked up an injury last week and is probably a couple of weeks away from fitness, as is Adam Smith, but Rhys Logan is again in the squad having got through his substitute appearance last week with no ill effects.
'Sam will add experience and quality in a key area of the pitch for us and he is certainly a welcome addition,' added Gusterson. 'The game will be a big and exciting challenge for us. Heybridge are enjoying a very good season but I want us to be competitive in all our games as a bare minimum and that has to start from today.'
The club is offering fans half price admission on Saturday and are expecting a good crowd.