Linnets boss on a summer of change at The Walks
- Credit: Ian Burt
Ian Culverhouse has had a busy summer as he prepares for King's Lynn Town's opening game of the National League season, against Southend on Saturday. Chris Lakey reports
Time is everything
Lynn’s decisions to go full-time this summer wasn’t made in haste – it has necessitated a lot of change and a big financial outlay. Without it, Ian Culverhouse knows Lynn would be struggling to keep their heads above water this season. With it, he believes they will be much more competitive.
“It gives you so much contact time where you haven’t got to be rushed for two hours on a Tuesday night and a Thursday night,” he said. “The detail we can actually give them is massive because we have all day with them, double sessions, sometimes three sessions in a day and it is really important we get as much information and detail into them as possible because it will benefit them in the long run.
“And the areas as well - when I first came here we were on a third of a pitch with 16 players and now we are lucky enough to have a partnership with Heacham and KES (King Edward VIII Academy) so we have whole areas so we can bounce around on different areas and get a real massive load of intake into them. It has been invaluable to us.”
Summer of change
Lynn are chasing one more player to add to their squad, although Culverhouse admits time is not on his side to get it sorted before the game against Southend.
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“We still need another one I think,” he said. “Defensively we are alright, we are probably a bit short in the wider areas but I think we still need an attacking option up there as well and we are working really hard but it hasn’t been easy. I think when these young kids hear there is an interest and they look on the map and then they look where we finished last year they don’t do their homework enough to find out what we are about – and agents don’t either. Agents have been very lazy saying, ‘no you don’t want to go there, let’s wait for a pro club or a Football League club’.
“I think this is a very good club for young players to come to and learn their trade and playing at this level and in men’s football will progress their careers immensely.”
Who have Lynn brought in?
Lynn have brought in nine new players – goalkeeper Paul Jones, defenders Dan Bowry, Luis Fernandez (loan) and Pierce Bird, midfielders Ethan Coleman, Munashe Sundire and Joe Rowley (loan) and strikers Gold Omotayo and Junior Morias.
"We found it very hard to recruit experience here because of them dropping down from where they are to us, so that has been really hard,” said Culverhouse. “That’s been a little bit of a struggle but what we have done we have recruited players that have probably had to take a step backward in their careers to go forward again. We really haven’t got a lot to offer them here – the selling point was ‘come here and we will give you the platform to show how good you are’ and that is what we can offer. To be fair, people have bought into it, they have looked at us and seen the type of possession-based football we play and they want to be a part of it. They have got that hunger back to go back into the Football League and succeed. It is exciting and I am looking forward to what happens.”
Don’t expect Lynn to change their style – and whether you like it or not, Ian Culverhouse is not shifting.
“I enjoy coaching, I love to coach and it is easier with experience, because you haven’t got to do the A, B and Cs with them, they already know that through playing, but I enjoy coaching the As and Bs and Cs, it fills me with great pride when you see a team go out there and try and play the way we try and play.
“It’s very easy to sit on the side and hit channels and play for regains, and second balls – but I don’t enjoy it. I know we are open to criticism because we overplay at times. We might not win as many games playing that way, but I’d rather watch the way we play.”