Bonnyton Thistle’s 2002s move to GADYFL poses new challenges after their first year at 11-a-side proved to be a successful one. With the debut season at that level bringing a league championship at the first ask for the Ayrshire club. Kenny Henderson, Thistle’s manager, spoke to Youth Football Scotland about the upcoming season.
"On the whole the boys done well, to win the league in our first season at 11 a-side was a fantastic achievement for the boys, there was some low points along the way but in general a fantastic start to competitive football," Henderson said.
With pre-season in full swing, Thistle have approached this season as they would any other despite changing league. "This season we are moving to the Glasgow and District Youth Football League [from the Central Ayrshire League],"Henderson said.
The change of scenery has not altered the preparation going into the new season, the Kilmarnock club’s manager said that they "have approached this season like we would with any other season, with a hard pre-season and a mixture of games against teams from different leagues."
Henderson has the luxury of a title-winning squad that is used to winning already, and after adding two new faces to a settled squad, Henderson hopes that keeping "most of the title winning squad together" will spur on the new signings "to come in and work hard and be patient for their chance in the starting 11."
One issue facing the club will be a lack of knowledge of the league they are going into, with Henderson admitting a lack of certainty over their possible rivals next season. "It’s hard to say who our rivals will be, I would imagine every game will present a challenge in different ways from what we are used to," he said.
Despite this Thistle will be aiming for the top of the league and "while we expect this to be of a better standard than we faced last season" the club is planning for a season where they can "compete and hopefully challenge for honours", Thistle’s manager said.
Good luck to Bonnyton Thistle in the 2015/16 season!