Published: 06:00, 17 October 2019
| Updated: 08:08, 17 October 2019
New Dartford manager Steve King has insisted he’s here for the long haul.
King left Welling in the summer halfway through a two-year deal after chairman Mark Goldberg wanted to become manager again.
But after penning a contract to stay at Princes Park until 2022, King stressed: “I want longevity. I really want to stay at a club for a long time and build something.
“I’m excited by the challenge at Dartford, every job is a challenge in its own way, but it’s a great set-up and has the facilities.
“There have been times before in my career when I’ve finished third in the league and not been able to compete in the play-offs due to the ground. It happened twice and I still stayed loyal to that club.”
Promotion is the long-term aim for Dartford and King – who has arguably the best record at this level of the game – is seen as the man to guide them there.
“The club has got great potential,” said King. “The ground is probably the best in the division. I think it’s crying out to get back up there.
“When I met the directors, they said they wanted to go back up. Sometimes I’ve been at clubs and they don’t really want to go up so that was great to hear.”
King took Welling to third place last season, only losing in the play-off final at Woking, and has previously enjoyed success with Lewes, Farnborough and Whitehawk.
It means there is already a degree of expectation for the new man to deliver. But King knows it will take time for the current crop of players to get used to his ideas.
“Fans are not silly, they’ve looked at my record in the division and are hoping I can bring them success because I’ve done that at every club,” said King.
“I hope I can fulfil that for everybody here but I haven’t got a magic wand, it’s going to take time.
“There’s a transition period as they are someone else’s group of players, and I have to get across my ideas and how I want to play.”
King’s first game in charge is at home to Isthmian Premier Kingstonian in the FA Cup fourth qualifying round this Saturday.
“They are a really good side and in Louie Theophanous they have a real threat up front,” said King, who is hoping to bring in a new signing this week.
“They are neat and tidy, and try to play. I’ve known the manager (Hayden Bird) for 20 years and he has always done well.
“The FA Cup is a one-off, I’ve been on the other end of it and caused upsets so I know that we’ve got to play to the best of our ability to get through.”
More by this authorMatthew Panting