Francis already targeting play-off berth

Solent & Gosport Devils celebrate league title success and promotion. Picture: Dave Chapman
Solent & Gosport Devils celebrate league title success and promotion. Picture: Dave Chapman
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Devils coach Will Francis can’t wait to pit his wits against the best in National League south division one – and already has his sights on a play-off place.

Francis, who has played in the Premier League for Guildford and Isle of Wight, has helped guide the Devils to division two title glory.

And after taking 19 wins and two draws from their 21 matches so far this campaign, Francis believes the Devils can make their mark at the higher level next season.

‘With one or two additions, a play-off spot would be great,’ he said.

‘We’re not looking to win the league above because there are some really good teams there and some are even bringing imports in.

‘Next year is going to be a battle, we know it is.

‘We’ve got to continue to make our place a fortress and if we do that we’ll be alright.

‘As long as we all pull together we’ll be just fine and, realistically, a play-off spot is what we’ll be aiming for.

‘I’m a young coach in the league, so next year will be a good test for me but I’m being successful at the moment and hopefully that will continue.’

Reflecting on the Devils’ remarkable season, Francis added: ‘The team camaraderie and atmosphere has been superb this year.

‘We were desperate to win after coming so close last time and it’s job done.

‘We’re three or four lines deep and everyone has played their part.

‘You couldn’t single anyone out because they’ve all done their job and that’s all you can ask for as a coach.

‘That strength in depth has kept us going.’