BROWNE ON THE BALL: The only way is up for Murray’s new-look squad

United celebrate.
United celebrate.

Duncan Browne has been impressed by the changes Adam Murray is making at Boston United...

We’re looking up, not down.

That was Adam Murray’s message after watching his Boston United side move 10 points clear of the National League North’s bottom three.

But, following that 2-0 win at Bradford Park Avenue, the manager wasn’t finished there.

He continued by adding that was always the case upon his arrival at the Jakemans Stadium six weeks ago, that the threat of relegation never really hung over him or the players.

It could be seen as the kind of statement you can easily make when you’ve got that little bit of daylight between yourselves and the chasing pack, those rivals who just need to find a quote like that to stick on the dressing room door for some additional motivation.

But the fact of the matter is that Murray is correct.

Throughout this campaign - even when the side had lost their first four competitive games, even after that FA Cup exit at Kettering, the Trophy defeat at Witton and the 9-2 drubbing at Fylde - the foundations of a good side were always there.

The ridiculous list of injuries never helped, but there was always a goal threat and there were always good players on the park.

They just couldn’t find that harmony on the field, the complete confidence in one another that we have grown accustomed of seeing in Boston squads for the past three seasons.

And that’s where Murray has worked his magic and deserves credit.

You could argue it didn’t take a genius to realise the spine of the team needed strengthening - which Murray did by bringing in Ross Durrant, Tom Batchelor, Joe Fitzpatrick, Charlie Gatter and Richard Brodie.

You could also suggest that moving out some players and getting those who remained to fulfil their potential were other glaringly obvious moves to make.

But it’s easier said than done.

It’s like that old adage of the boat mechanic fixing a clapped out vessel with a quick whack of a hammer and invoicing the owner £105.

When challenged on the price for such little effort, the boat mechanic smiles and states: “A fiver for hitting the boat and £100 for knowing where to strike.”

Identifying a problem is the simple part.

Knowing how to fix it is the challenge, and that’s what separates the should-dos and the will-dos.

Murray didn’t just log on to and take a punt.

He used his knowledge, contacts and experience to identify the players he thought could make a difference, likewise when it came to moving players on to surroundings which would suit them.

And instilling a new work ethic into a squad so swiftly also deserves praise.

There was undoubtedly a time this season when Boston, despite a fair amount of huff and puff, could have easily left the Horsfall Stadium without a single point for their efforts.

But now there’s a dogged determination to the team, a new-found resolve, strength in depth and a side who ensure their goalkeeper really doesn’t have many saves to make in a game.

With three wins, two draws and one defeat from his opening six matches, and finally having a squad closer to his style, Murray has every right to think about looking up, not down.