Promotion delights joint boss Picton, but South Shields now want the title
Joint manager Lee Picton hailed South Shields' promotion heroes last night '“ and then set his sights on another league title.
Shields secured a third successive promotion with a comfortable 3-0 win over Glossop North End.
And a third championship in a row is within their grasp, with the Mariners needing just five more points from their final four games to wrap it up.
Picton was full of praise for his players after promotion was sealed in front of a crowd of over 1,400.
He said: “The players have been exceptional all season, and we can only thank them for their unbelievable commitment, focus and humility.
“Like last season, we’ve all pulled in the same direction and, when you’ve got a dressing room like that, you can achieve some great things.
“We’ve just got a special group of people in that dressing room.
“When the chips have been down, when we’ve needed to dig in, when things haven’t quite gone our way, the vast majority of the time we’ve found the right answers.”
The season is far from over as far as Picton is concerned, though.
He added: “What we have to ensure now is that we go and finish the job.
“We’re in a great position with four games to go.
“A win and a draw would probably be enough to clinch the title, and we’ll aim to do that in the next two games.
“Hats off to the players.
“They deserve all the accolades and plaudits that they get, because they’ve been an incredible bunch of people to be around.
“Graham (Fenton, joint manager) and I are very proud of them and the staff that have all played their part in what is shaping up to be another fantastic season for South Shields.”
The real celebrations are yet to come.
Picton said: “We firmly believe that we’re the best team in this division this season.
“If we didn’t have the trophy at the end of the season to prove that, in our opinions it would be a bit of a travesty.”
“We’ll give ourselves a pat on the back now, but we’ll hold back the real celebrations hopefully for when we lift that trophy.”