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Tonbridge Angels boss Steve McKimm priced out of reinforcements after FA Trophy exit

By Craig Tucker

Steve McKimm tried to sign three new players on the way home after Tonbridge’s FA Trophy exit at lower-league Heybridge.

Angels lost 2-1 to the Bostik North club in Tuesday’s first qualifying round replay, following a 3-3 draw at Longmead on Saturday.

Manager McKimm wasted no time getting on the phone but drew a blank in his bid to strengthen the squad, with money the stumbling block.

Tonbridge boss Steve McKimm Picture Gary Browne

Tonbridge boss Steve McKimm Picture: Gary Browne

He said: “I made a few calls on the way home on the coach but I was priced out of the market. It’s a poisoned chalice at the minute – it’s very difficult to get players in.

“I know my budget won’t be cut from going out of the cups, like at some clubs, but I do know I’ve been priced out of three players and I’m not talking small margins, either.

“I know what ball park we’re in – I knew that at the start of the season – and we’re way off what some clubs are paying.

“We’ve come up short in both the FA Cup and FA Trophy this year and it’s not good enough. But we’ve got a league campaign to concentrate on now and there’s still six-and-a-half months to go.”

McKimm retains faith in his squad but feels they need help as they bid to mount a Bostik Premier play-off challenge.

He said: “The players are good enough, but sometimes you need to freshen things up.

“We’ve got two young lads there in Callum Taylor and Liam Smith who have been a revelation for me. There will come a time when they need a rest but the squad’s threadbare at the moment.”

Angels sit 10th, five points off the play-offs, and visit Enfield Town on Saturday. Town are down in 16th but are unbeaten at home.

McKimm said: “They’ve done very well at home and our away record is appalling, which goes back to my first year here when I didn’t have a squad.

“It’s my job to pick the boys up and hopefully we’ll go into the game with a new lease of life.”

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