DEWSBURY boss Lee Greenwood says that his focus will be on bringing the right type of characters into the club in the off-season, citing York City Knights as an example of how far a side with the right team culture can go.
The Rams finished Greenwood’s first season at the Tetley’s Stadium in 12th, the final spot above the Championship relegation zone, which will put the club at a disadvantage in terms of central funding for next season.
It will be a busy autumn as they look to build their squad for 2020. Adam Ryder, Michael Knowles, Sam Day, Tom Garratt and Liam Finn have re-signed for next season with Dewsbury poised to announce other new deals.
Change is coming though, and Greenwood has turned to what his main focus will be on when looking for new recruits.
“I want to make a change to what’s been going on here for quite a while,” he said. “I’ve spoken a lot this season about a mindset change and this is part of it.
“Already a lot of my time has been spent looking at and researching any player that comes up, because I’m dead keen on getting the right type of person, not just going off a highlights video of them scoring a few tries in a certain game.
“I like to watch people over difficult games and the tougher period they have in their season, and make sure I’m getting the right type of character.
“I’ll use York as an example: York are not a team full of superstars and when we’ve played them we’ve looked more than a match for them in both games, but their record in tight games compared to ours is the polar opposite.
“That’s not quality of player, that’s the sort of culture they’ve built over the last couple of years. That’s probably where I need to take us; with the budget we’ve got it’s more about the type of people that we’re bringing in.
“If it’s purely about money, you’re not coming to Dewsbury.
“A lot of my time is spent doing a lot of research on players to bring in that fit with the budget. It’s not easy but I’m confident that it can be done. Hopefully we’ll make the necessary improvements that I feel need making so we’re not just recycling the same stuff year-on-year.
“But this Championship division does get gradually harder and the financial muscle that gets added to it. There are more expansion teams being spoken about that could be here in the next couple of years as well. If Newcastle come up, they’ll be one of the biggest spenders in the division straight away.
“The way the funding works, it almost keeps you where you’re at which makes it a bit more difficult for teams finishing lower down.”
At least Greenwood is not in the position he was in this time last year, when he wasn’t at the club. The former Gloucestershire boss was only appointed in mid-October to replace Neil Kelly, giving him a difficult job finding players.
“We’d signed a fair number of the squad but lost some very good players in the team, and then we were trying to replace them from November onwards which proved impossible,” he said.
“We’re in a better spot as in knowing what positions to fill earlier, but the financial constraints are quite tough so it’s not going to be easy, and that’s where I’ve got to be a bit creative to get where we need to be.”