Luke Rutledge is looking for more consistency from his Adamstown Rosebud team when the delayed 2020 NNSW NPL season finally gets underway.
The COVID-19 pandemic saw all football activities suspended in March, with clubs allowed to return to training late last month in hopes of a potential July start to the competition.
It was a disappointing 2019 campaign for Adamstown who finished last for the first time since 2007.
Adamstown, the equal most successful club in northern NSW history with 12 top flight premierships, have not won league silverware during the last two decades. But the club will hope to bounce back this campaign and enjoyed a promising pre-season before the suspension of football.
Rosebud advanced to the final of the annual Heritage Cup, showcasing some exciting youngsters across the tournament who are set to make their mark in season 2020.
“We need more consistency just in the way we play and more discipline,” Rutledge said.
“We were in a lot of games [last year] and we lacked a bit of composure.
“We’ve had a pretty good pre-season. We surprised a few teams and I think as the season goes on we’ll get better.
“The boys are raring to go. It’s been a tough pre-season but what we lack in experience we’re hoping to make up for it in fitness.”
In a huge boost for Adamstown, coach Shane Cansdell-Sherriff will pull on the boots with the former English League footballer bringing a wealth of experience to the backline.
Rosebud will need to improve on their 20 goals scored last season but have lost club top goal-scorer Connor Heydon to Weston.
Attacker Luke Vallone impressed in pre-season and will be a livewire for Adamstown while Daniel Eisenhaeur will hope to have a big year between the sticks after earning the number one spot.
Adamstown lost a number of close games last year and showed glimpses of their prospects, while finding that winning formula will be a task for Cansdell-Sherriff and the squad.
Much of the squad tasted wooden spoon disappointment last season and will be eager to impress this campaign. Adamstown will be buoyed by their pre-season improvements and acquisitions but will need a source of consistent goals. A mid-table finish or higher is on the cards if they can click this year and turn those narrow losses into points.
Adamstown Rosebud F.C
Coach: Shane Cansdell-Sherriff
Captain: Luke Rutledge
Last Season: 11th
Ins: Callum Gabriel (Newcastle Jets Youth), James Lowe (Boambee Bombers), Louis Townsend (Maitland), Shane Cansdell-Sherriff (year off), Tristan Esquilant (Weston), Tyson Cummings (Lake Macquarie), Yuki Yakushinji (Japan)
Outs: Ben Higgins, Benn Kelly, Chris Berlin (Lake Macquarie), Connor Heydon (Weston), Finley Beasley, Judd Duncan (year off), Liam Ryan, Matthew Sokulsky (Hamilton Azzurri)