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New Linnets boss aims to bring community spirit and professional outlook

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Paul Turner took over as New Milton Town FC boss during the summer.
Paul Turner took over as New Milton Town FC boss during the summer.

NEW Milton Town FC boss Paul Turner is looking to bring a professional outlook to the club for the upcoming season and beyond.

The Linnets have struggled in recent years in Sydenhams Division One. Last season, the Linnets finished their cut-short season 16th and managerless after Nigel Green and Paul Nineham left the club during the campaign.

However, with Turner now at the helm, the side are looking to better their showing last season. Off the pitch, the former Poole Town reserves manager has made an immediate impact with new sponsors, new backroom staff and an influx of players but due to Covid-19, the transition has been challenging.

Turner believes the Linnets can better their form of recent years and said the club has the potential to be a bigger non-league side. He said: “I’ve always looked at New Milton and thought it is a club that should do better than where it has been over a number of years.

“I thought it would be an amazing long project as it ticked a lot of the boxes I look for, and that’s why I wanted to accept the job offer.”

Turner added: “We want to operate a grassroots club at a grassroots level but in a professional environment. I get reports every session from my coaches, video reports from my goalkeeper coach. Why can’t a grassroots club go about its business like a professional club? That’s what we are trying to do."

Turner, who is a Christchurch resident, was with Poole Town for eight years where he worked his way up through the ranks from youth and U18 level to become the reserves team manager. Since his arrival, he has stated that he has felt a ‘community spirit’ from the club which he hopes will improve the club’s status in the Wessex leagues.

“People associated with the club have been taken aback by what you can achieve with some like-minded individuals.

“With Covid-19 being challenging, there has been a sense of togetherness throughout the community. I think we can go into New Milton and produce some community spirit.”

Turner continued: “We want people not just to drive past New Milton while they are on their way to Bashley or Christchurch to watch their non-league Saturday football but to stop at New Milton. If we can raise the profile and create more of a community spirit and get more bums on seats, it’s going to help the club get to where it should be.

“I don’t want to stop at 50 or 80 supporters. Why can’t we get 150 supporters? Everything we have done so far and promoted has shown that community spirit. There are 30,000 people in New Milton, and even if we can get a small percentage of that, it will really bolster the club.”

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