FOOTBALL: Here we go again!

Howard B - at home. '''�2012Derek Simpson
Howard B - at home. '''�2012Derek Simpson

Howard Beverland may have had a pretty impressive season last time out, but the batteries are recharged and he is itching to get back in action again.

The defender just missed out on the league’s Young Player of the Year award as the Bannsiders challenged for honours, but he aiming to top that this time around.

“I’ve felt I’ve really progressed as a player over the last season learning under the coaches we have here,” the Ballymoney man told Times Sport.

“The way it is here now is when you do well you have to keep up that level and not let it drop away.

“I was under pressure last season as I won a few awards and it will be the same again this season.

“It would be great to be standing here again next summer and saying the same thing again, but it is about the team first and foremost.

“However as individuals we have to take care of our own performances for the benefit of the team.”

Beverland has come close twice to winning major honours at The Showgrounds and he said finally realising that dream would mean the world to him.

“It would mean everything to bring some silverware back here,” he said.

“That was my reason for signing on again as I want to win a major trophy with Coleraine as it would mean so much more than doing it with any other team.

“I’m the kind of person who wants to better myself and I don’t rest on my laurels, I always want to take it to another level.

“I feel I can do that here and achieve the personal goals I set myself.”

Beverland knows that last season’s performances have upped the ante both for him and the team as a whole, but it’s a pressure he’s more than happy to have.

“Last year went really well for us, but there’s a feeling of unfinished business at the same time,” he said.

“The pressure is on us this season, it will be a different type of pressure than before after finishing fourth and reaching the cup final. So that’s the very least the fans will be expecting for us to achieve this season.

“But I feel we have the players who can more than deal with that pressure.

“It’s a challenge we all want. We want people to be considering us as being capable of challenging for us.

“That’s the type of pressure people can thrive under, it certainly beats playing in the bottom six.”

“It shows just how far the club has come over the last year or so.

“The break went in really quickly to be honest, but I think we’re all glad to be back at it again.

“We’ve come back earlier than most teams. I was speaking to players form other teams and most of them came back a week after us.

“But if that means we’re a couple of weeks ahead of them when the season starts then great, it can only help us.

“The coaching has been great as always, tough but enjoyable.

“We all know that this is where the hard work is done for the season ahead.

“You trust the coaches as they know us inside out and they know what we need to push us on even further than last year.”

The transfer market has been slow throughout the league but Beverland points to the return of Kyle McVey, Darren McAuley and Michael Hegarty as a major boost for the club.

“It’s been quiet all over and it maybe feels there’s no movement compared to last summer but we have a lot of players returning this summer who will give us a big boost,” said Beverland.

“There’s no doubt it would be nice to add a couple of players just to freshen things up and to put down a marker to the other teams that we mean business and that we’re not content just to tread water.

“But I’m sure the manager has plenty of irons in the fire and will make his move when he feels it is right for the club.”