Guernsey Press

LISTEN: 'It's a challenge not a crisis'

‘LET’S not blow things out of proportion.’ That is the message from the coach of the reigning Priaulx League champions when analysing this year’s disappointments in the Island Games, Muratti and inter-island knock-out competitions at senior level.

Rovers coach Kevin Gillease, far left, watches on during his side's Rawlinson Cup match with Vale Rec. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 32423877)

Looking ahead to the new season, which kicks off officially on Tuesday night when his Rovers side face North in the Martinez Cup, Kevin Gillease admits there is a gap for Guernsey sides to bridge to their Jersey counterparts, but it is not quite the crisis some have made out.

‘I’m not quite as cynical as some others, to be honest. I don’t think it’s as drastic as what people say,’ said Gillease on the first Guernsey Press Football Podcast of the new season.

‘It’s not like the clubs aren’t doing anything ... we’ve got the whole spectrum, the whole age groups all the way through and trying to find ways of improving everyone.

‘It’s certainly not comfortable, that’s what I will say. We’re all trying to push on, but at the moment I think Jersey have just got that generation of slightly better players that we were lucky to have a few years ago.

‘So I’m not concerned really. I think things will even out as time goes on, but certainly from us, we’re doing all we can. I know all the other clubs are doing all they can.

‘It’s not like we want to be losing these games, it’s just the way it is at the moment. You take a certain group of players out of the league and it filters down.

‘We’ve just got to start building again, but it’s from lower as well. Trying to get everything right is not easy, but it’s certainly not as bad as what some people are making it out to be. That’s my view.’

Gillease also revealed that he is excited to see how his squad cope with being the hunted rather than the hunters this season.

‘It’s a different mindset, a different challenge. Everyone’s after us now, so it’s how we react to that and how the players cope with that bit of pressure,’ he said.