The Ryman Football League
Published 20th July 2012
The former Gillingham boss was appointed manager at the Essex club in May, charged with returning the team to the Blue Square Bet South after they were relegated last year.
Having won only five games last season, Stimson wants the players to experience that winning feeling again. He told the Thurrock Gazette: “We just need to get that winning habit back. In recent seasons, the club haven’t won enough games, and we’ve got to instill that feeling of winning.
“We’ve got to win and perform and we’ll see where that takes us. But we must get that winning mentality back.”
Stimson added that there had been wholesale changes in the playing staff at the club, with only a few players from last year being retained and a whole host of triallists likely to feature over the early stages of pre-season. But one source at the club has revealed how there is already a feeling of positivity at Ship Lane, following two dismal years.
Fixtures in the Ryman Premier league will pit Stimson against former club Canvey Island, as well as East Thurrock United, who beat all expectations last year. But for the man who is all too familiar with footballing success in Thurrock – after leading Grays to Conference South glory in 2005 and two FA Trophy successes in 2005 and 2006 – is looking forward to his new challenge. “I’m definitely happy. It’s a challenge to look forward to and we’re all looking forward to the season.
“It’s getting closer now, especially with the fixtures being released last week.
“It’s a difficult league. There are some good sides and it will be interesting.”
As the rebuild at Thurrock continues, Premiership outfit West Ham United come to Ship Lane on Saturday for a pre-season friendly with former Premier League side Blackburn coming to the Borough on Monday.
It is likely that in both those games, Thurrock will face youthful sides but Stimson says that will do the team good, particularly with the emphasis being on fitness at this stage.
“For the players, it’s good to play against young pros. It’s pre-season so a big factor is fitness, but they are great games for the club.”