CTLFC player Jo Lenton reveals how the team is progressing well after a transitional period.
Looking back upon 2012-13 season, it was certainly a period of change for the club.
It all began under the leadership of Andy Liddle and we made a positive start to the campaign. We had got some decent results under our belt thanks to some new additions to the squad, great team spirit and our improved fitness levels.
We can thank Ian Hutton for the extra spring in our step last year. He’s a qualified PT and an ex semi-pro footballer so he certainly put us through our paces during last year’s pre-season. Some big changes took place halfway through the campaign when Ian became our first team manager and Andy “went upstairs” to take on the role of Chairman.
Ian was keen to make his mark and we made some changes to our formation and our tactics which proved to be really successful. We finished in a comfortable mid-table position in the South West Women’s Premier League with big ambitions going into the 2013/14 campaign.
So this is where things start to get really interesting. We have a number of aims going forward – to start a Development side, to gear up for a promotion push and to really focus on a professional approach to all aspects of our game both on and off the pitch. We want to be as professional as we can as this is one of the keys to success.
We can tick off the first target as we have now entered our newly formed Development side into the Gloucestershire County Women’s League Division Two. This is going to give everyone at the club the opportunity to gain some match time and help some of our younger players gather experience and give them a chance to strut their stuff on the pitch!
As for the promotion push, our first team will be geared up to take on the League and we are hopeful that we can finish the new season with some silverware. We all know this is a big ask but we’ve recruited a number of highly experienced new players and with a full off-season and pre-season plan in place, everyone will be raring to go when that first whistle blows.
In terms of the bigger picture we’re making a real effort to increase our exposure in the local community. We’ve set up a Twitter account so everyone can keep up to date with our progress – check us out (@CTLadies). This has really helped to cement links with the men’s team, so much so that we’ve had a couple of the lads come to watch us play and help out at training which really boosts everyone’s morale and we love the ‘One Team’ mentality.
The Gloucestershire Echo have also been really good to us and we’ve had a number of great articles in the local paper over the last few months. The plan is to continue with this as the campaign progresses and this will only benefit the club in attracting new players and hopefully some local sponsorship as well.
You’ll be hearing a lot from us in the future and how we’re getting on as the months progress. We’re undergoing a period of evolution and we’d love all Cheltenham Town fans to get behind us and help support our club as we look forward to the 2013/14 season with some big expectations!
If you'd like to learn more about the Cheltenham Town Ladies or would like to get involved then please tweet them at @CTladies or head to their website by clicking here. Alternatively you can call Chairman Andy Liddle on 07900 808067.
*CTLFC pictures courtesy of Rosie Watts*