Pinchbeck player/boss Ian Dunn. Photo by JAKE WHITELEY

Break will leave Dunn ready to go

Pinchbeck United boss Ian Dunn says he needed the long break that’s been afforded to him.

Last season was a miserable one for the Knights as they sat rock bottom of the United Counties League Premier Division with just one win from 27 games.

But with the season cancelled due to the COVID-19 Pinchbeck won’t be relegated.

After regularly challenging at the top of the league, the season took its toll on Dunn.

“I did feel I needed a proper break at the end of a long and tough season,” he said. “I’ve had six straight years of mostly success and this last year bolted on the end.

“When you’re not winning it feels like a long time so this break’s been quite welcome.

“I’ve already had two months out and by the time we get back playing it could be six or nine months.

“Even during a pre-season you might only get a couple of weeks before you’re phoning around speaking to players, but this time everything has properly been on hold.

“I’ve had the chance to recharge and will be ready for the re-start.”

While the Premier League season will recommence later this month, Dunn says he thinks it will be a long while until football at lower levels is even permitted again.

“I’ve no idea when we’ll play again,” he said. “It might even not be until we’ve got a vaccine.

“I’m not sure how any team can say they are signing players and preparing for next season.

“I think it’s going to be a long time before we’re instructed that football at lower levels can begin.

“I’ve left it open to players to come back before pre-season.

“A couple of the lads we had from loan from Lincoln last season have said they have had offers at a higher level for next season.

“Otherwise no-one has said we’re going there or anywhere.

“I don’t know how teams can say they’re signing players when realistically we’re not going to be playing for months.

“Normally you can sign in July, but that’s for an August start.

“I have been speaking to players, putting the feelers out to the types of player we’re looking to get in.

“But we’re leaving it by saying we’ll catch up closer to the time we can sign players on.”

Dunn spoke to The Voice before it was announced that groups could train without contact in groups of six from this week.

He says he’d already heard some clubs had been doing that anyway with smaller groups, but that it wasn’t something Pinchbeck would be doing at that time.

“I’ve heard that some clubs have been getting in non-contact training sessions with two or three people but it could be two or three months before we’re starting yet,” Dunn said. “Anyone who plays at a level is good for that level anyway as they generally look after themselves enough to play at that level.

“Of the players I spoke to, my main aim is to get a bit of experience in as I feel we lacked that drastically at times last season.

“I’ve spoken to a few people and have been getting some good vibes.

“No-one’s agreed anything but I wouldn’t expect anyone to yet.

“As we’ve said all along, this virus is bigger than football and until the government tell the FA we can do anything everyone’s in limbo.”

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