Article by James Barrett-Sterling
Carshalton Athletic player/manager Peter Adeniyi has only just begun to contemplate some relaxation despite leading the club to promotion as Bostik South champions last month, writes James Barrett-Sterling.
The Robins finished their season top of the tree with 102 points, suffering only two league defeats during the last six months, and so take a place in next season’s Bostik Premier division.
But Adeniyi hasn’t booked any trips to sun-drenched climes or fun-filled destinations – yet.
“I’ve attended some of the play-off games in our division, watched my old club Dulwich Hamlet win promotion via their play-off and been keeping up with all the professional leagues finishing,” he said.
“Plus I’ve already had a meeting with (club chairman) Paul Dipre about next season. I’m sure I’ll get to taking a break soon but thankfully I love football so much that none of it feels like a chore.”
With promotion already assured, Carshalton sealed the title with a thumping 7-0 win over VCD Athletic on the last day of the season and Adeniyi claims winning any league isn’t a fluke.
“We had some ups and downs but, in the end, we achieved what we wanted. Winning a league doesn’t happen by accident and the players never knew when to give up,” he explained.
“I’m also a believer in football writing its own stories. We hit three last-minute winners during April, all via different players, and we only lost two games since the start of November – that’s a bit crazy really.
“But the squad were brilliant, a fantastic group of players that bonded well, and that is a big reason why we got promoted.”
Six players, including Adeniyi himself, shared the seven goals against VCD and the 38-year old midfielder paid further testament to his squad.
“A result like that wasn’t entirely surprising to me and getting an early goal helped it along. It was a great way to wrap up the season,” Adeniyi smiled.
“The hardest part for me in the lead up to that game was team selection. I still had four line-ups in my mind on the Saturday morning.
“That’s because everyone has contributed this season and training sessions have always been of a high standard. I feel fortunate to have been in charge of such a fantastic group of players.”
And, while he starts to consider a small break in the close season, Adeniyi believes the retention and recruitment of players will be constantly on his mind.
“I think most of the players already here are good enough to play at a higher level, and they’ll get a chance to prove it, but there's always a need to keep improving,” he said.
“I’m sure we’ll also get offers for some of our boys but I’m hoping most will want to stay and continue playing for this club.”
The fixtures for the new Bostik Premier will be released in mid-July, with the first games kicking off on Saturday 11th August.
Photo credit: Ian Gerrard