The Evo-Stik League Northern Premier
Published 20th June 2012
....coaching staff at Gresley FC, insisting he “wouldn’t have won it without them”.
The Moat boss picked up the gong at last Saturday’s annual presentation, held at Walsall’s Banks’s Stadium, where they were also officially presented with the championship trophy.
Norton said: “I was a little bit surprised.
“I was made aware that they did an awards night at the end of the season, and with us winning the league I thought I would be in with a shout.
“But I’m quite pessimistic, and the teams who won the cups also had fantastic seasons, so it was nice when I found out.
“From a personal perspective, it was certainly an honour for me.
“But it was a team effort and the award is for my backroom team as well as the players.
“I wouldn’t have won it without them and I’d like to dedicate it to the whole team.”
Gresley are now looking forward to competing in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League First Division South next season after it was confirmed they had been accepted into that league at the AGM in Blackpool last weekend.
Norton said: “We’ve had all the gear — training tops and the like — from the Evo-Stik League, which makes it all a bit more real.
“Now we’re just looking forward to the fixtures coming out.”
The league starts on Saturday, August 18th, with Norton and new joint-manager Martin Rowe still intending to give last season’s championship-winning side the opportunity to make the step up.
Norton said: “We’re still keen to give everyone in the team a chance.
“Some of the existing players might want to move on because they’re not getting the wage rises they might want or expect.
“And because of their achievements last season, a lot of the players will get interest from other clubs.
“To be honest, I’d be disappointed if they didn’t, because it shows that they are talented.
“But we are making the current players our priority and hopefully we can persuade most of them to stay.”
However, there will be additions to the squad, although Norton admitted some negotiations were proving out of Gresley’s limited wage structure.
He said: “We have been speaking to a number of players.
“But we’re becoming accustomed to the demands that players are after.
“There’s no difference to the budget this season, which is sensible, but it’s going to be a challenge.
“It may restrict us in terms of who we bring in.”