PAUL Lines is hoping his experience of working wonders on a shoestring budget at Yorkshire Amateurs will have a similar positive impact on his new club Wakefield FC.
Lines was appointed manager of the cash-strapped Evo-Stik Division 1 North side last week and has been charged with the task of steering the club away from relegation.
The former Ossett Town manager was number one choice for Wakefield after Steve Nicholson left the post but the Bears appointed Mark Brier as interim coach for just one match while Lines weighed-up his options.
His first game in charge saw Wakefield slump to a heavy 5-1 loss against Harrogate Railway Athletic at Stade France last Saturday but Lines had just days not only to prepare his squad, but to build a new one from scratch.
His fine job of transforming Yorkshire Amateurs from Northern Counties East League relegation strugglers to promotion candidates in just one year fit the bill when Wakefield were choosing their new manager.
And Lines is confident he can use that experience to steer Wakefield to safety this season.
“Yorkshire Amateurs have traditionally been relegation strugglers in the last few years and I changed that to get them on the verge of promotion last season,” he said.
“I managed to do that in one year. We started off losing the first six or seven games but then we went on an unbeaten run of about 20 games after we shaped the squad and after the players gelled.
“I’m not saying we’ll do that here, but it’s going to take time. We’ll build slowly but we’ll build surely.
“It’s not going to happen overnight but we also know that we need to start picking up points as soon as possible.”
Lines is overhauling the squad with new players and goalkeeper Danny Trueman, left-back or midfielder Josh Grant and midfielder or striker Danny Forrest are set to arrive this week.
“We’ve got a squad of about 16 players now and I want to bring more in,” he said.
“We’ve got to stop leaking goals so the defence is a priority. We’re creating plenty of chances but we do need to strengthen at the back.”
The Bears are involved in a big game this afternoon when they travel to second-from-bottom Cammell Laird (kick-off 3pm).
Lines said: “It’s a big game and one we’ll go in to win. I set my team up to win every game we go into.”
Ossett Town are scheduled to return to Division 1 North action this afternoon when they welcome high-flying Farsley FC to Stade France (kick-off 3pm).
Town have seen their last two matches called off due to bad weather, away at Prescot Cables last weekend and home against Salford City on Tuesday night, and will be eager to return and avoid rearranged matches piling up in the new year.
The odds will be against Phil Sharpe’s men, who’ve lost three of their last four matches, while Farsley are flying high in third and looking to secure promotion this season.
Ossett Albion will be aiming to continue their good form across the Pennines at Bamber Bridge today (kick-off 3pm).
The Warehouse Systems Stadium club have lost just one of their last six matches, hauling them closer to an escape from the Division 1 North relegation spots.
They beat Albion Sports on penalties in the West Riding County Cup on Tuesday night and will look to continue that momentum into today’s clash with Bridge.
See this week’s Wakefield Express Sport for all the latest sports news from around the district.