Craig Levein insists Brechin City are determined to bounce back up to the SPFL in one year – and won’t make excuses over travel-weary legs.
City will kick off their Highland League campaign on Saturday with a home clash against Turriff United and will clock up 3,594 miles on the road in the league alone this season.
But while they have a 480-mile round trip to Wick Academy to come on October 16th, City’s director of football Levein has dismissed any travel concerns.
The former Dundee United and Scotland boss travelled across England as Leicester City manager for 15 months.
And he insists the Highland League journeys are incomparable.
“For me the travelling is not even an issue,” Levein told Courier Sport. “If you play football in the Premier League in England then the travelling is a lot worse than the Highland League.
“Players come here on the understanding that they are in the Highland League.
“We’ll do everything we can to make their journeys to and from matches as comfortable as possible. That’s football.
“It’s what we do on the park that counts. Our manager Andy Kirk wants to impose his style of football on the opposition.
Levein targets quick return to SPFL
“For us it’s about promotion and nothing else. Andy came into his job with his eyes open.
“The fight is always there – whether or not you are favourites to win the league or not. You have to do it on the park.
“We have some really tough teams in this league – none more so than Brora Rangers who showed last year what they can do against Hearts.
“But the good thing is we have the support from the board.
“The chairman Kevin Mackie has been excellent and everyone who has joined the board has been so enthusiastic.
“It’s working well behind the scenes too. The volunteers who are getting the ground ready, the players, the fans – we all have the same goal.
“We want to put the smiles back onto the faces of the people of Brechin and it starts now.”
Levein on Brechin City transfers
Former Hearts striker Kirk has overhauled the Brechin squad since taking over in June.
City have made some impressive moves in the transfer market.
The capture of highly-experienced former Raith Rovers captain Iain Davidson his first signing.
Former Montrose striker Garry Wood and St Johnstone loan stars Jack Wills and Max Kucheriavyi have also arrived at Glebe Park, along with David Cox.
And last season’s player-boss Michael Paton has been convinced to stay on in a playing capacity.
The club being overhauled behind the scenes and City securing top-class training facilities in Dundee and Edinburgh.
With almost 300 season ticket sales, it’s little surprise the Angus side are in confident mood for the season ahead.
“The changes we made had to happen,” added Levein. “We had no choice. There were only had three or four signed players.
“We have worked hard to get experienced players in.
“We have also convinced Michael – who had been manager here – to stay on.
“That could have been really awkward but he has really embraced playing for Andy and his experience will be invaluable this year.”