BRENDAN Kelly says Bromsgrove Sporting are “two years ahead of schedule” after another successful 12 months which have taken the Rouslers to the summit of step three of non-league football.
Bromsgrove were third in Southern League Premier Division Central prior to Boxing Day’s trip to Alvechurch, which, compared to a year previous when the club were second in Southern League Division One Central, is a stark reminder of the progress made in a relatively short space of time.
In a year in which the Rouslers completed back-to-back-to-back promotions after a dramatic 4-3 extra-time play-off final victory over Corby Town back in May, Kelly says that another match from that promotion campaign stands out as his most memorable from this calendar year.
“The play-offs will be in the memory bank for a long time,” he said.
“We had Jason [Cowley] moving on to full-time football [at Stevenage], there’s been that many good performances to choose from.
“If I had to choose one, it’d probably be the [2-1] win away to Peterborough Sports.
“They ended up winning the league, but to go there and win after they had been unbeaten at home for so long was really special.”
Having completed his first full-year in charge of the club in 2019, Kelly still finds it hard to believe the forward momentum that Bromsgrove have generated to hold their own, and conquer, some of the most-established sides at this level of the non-league ladder.
“The club will tell you in terms of their blueprint that we’re two years ahead of schedule,” said the Rouslers boss.
“We didn’t expect to get promoted last season and to be in this league, but it’s been a huge year and a very progressive one and I can’t thank everyone behind the scenes enough.
“We should be proud of where we are. Some people will say we’ve got one of the biggest fan bases in the league, but in terms of resources we’re below most other sides.
“We’re massively overachieving to be where we are at the half-way stage of the season. There have been plenty of games where we’ve had to dig deep, but even when we’re up against it we’ve always stayed in the majority of the games against better sides.”
With the prospect of a fourth-consecutive promotion not too far out of Bromsgrove’s reach in 2020, the Bromsgrove manager says he does not have long-term thinking when it comes to the second half of the campaign, adding: “I’m really not thinking that far.
“We’re still learning, I hope we can keep going and we’ll continue to just take each game as it comes.
“You can rise up the table or drop three or four places in a short space of time, the league has still not settled down in my opinion.
“We’ll continue to give a good account of ourselves, there’s a lot of work to do in 2020 and there’s a few lads that we need to sit down with to sort out their futures, but we’ll keep moving forward.”