Bellingen’s new band of brothers set for CPL challenge
Coastal Premier League new boys Bellingen FC believe they have what it takes to mix it with the competition heavyweights in their first season.
Coach Henry Gale insists he has the players at his disposal to challenge for the finals after pre-season victories over Northern Storm and Boambee.
“The boys are setting their sights towards the top four,” he said.
“We’ve got some good players that have played at a high level for a long time and also there’s some good young youth in there as well.
“It’s a good mix, it’s just a matter of them being ready to step up to this level.”
Gale admitted it had been a three-year process to join the competition which required a few hurdles to be overcome.
“It was a bit of a sore point at the start because we did all come from Urunga who were top three pretty well every season and contending for the title,” he said.
“So going from that to having nothing in our shire was heartbreaking as was not having somewhere for all the young talent to go and play at a decent level.
“We decided it was in our best interest to pursue it as hard as we could.”
The result was now a close-knit squad who felt they could achieve anything.
“Having the players who want to fight for each other is a big thing rather than having a squad that comes from all parts,” Gale said.
“It’s now almost like a band of brothers.”
The key to Bellingen’s success will come at the defensive end of the field with Gale to focus on making it difficult for opposition attackers.
“I feel like defensive shape is our key and working out our plan of holding teams and being able to push for our shape,” he said.
“We’ve got quick players who can counter, we’ve got good players in and around the ball who can play really nice triangles and break away really quickly.
“But to hold teams out is our main objective.”