‘IT WAS never in doubt’ were the first words from the victorious Weymouth manager Mark Molesley as the management staff gathered round to speak after they sealed the Evo-Stik Southern Premier South with a 3-0 victory over Farnborough.
With the players in sheer euphoria over their title victory and their celebrations in the changing room behind a small office ringing out, Molesley admitted the last two weeks had been the toughest of his reign.
Taunton Town kept Weymouth fighting until the last minute, with the Peacocks in pole position with half an hour of the league season to go, but goals from Yemi Odubade, Brandon Goodship and Ben Thomson saw the title head to Dorset.
Molesley said: “It was never in doubt, this group has worked too hard, our process was too strong.
“People have thrown a few things at us this week, but we have had that since when me and Tom (Prodomo, assistant) first took over and assembled our staff, we have had that from day one.
“We were used to that, we always believed in the boys, always believed in ourselves.”
Molesley then admitted it had been a tough two weeks leading up to Saturday, with Weymouth having had three matches which could have resulted in the title being sealed on each occasion, but ended with Taunton narrowing the gap each time.
Molesley said: “Don’t get me wrong, these last two weeks have been the toughest of my reign mentally and physically because so much was on the line.”
However, he says his side never stopped believing and says it was no fluke that the Terras took the title and the accompanying promotion to the National League South.
Molesley said: “Never once did we stop believing.
“Never once did we not have the faith.
“We knew that if we turned up and played our game we knew that we were the best team in this league and we proved that (against Farnborough).”
“We have won the league, it is not by a fluke, I think we are worthy winners.
“Every team up there with us we have beaten, apart from Poole, the only team we have drawn with twice.”
Molesley also took a moment to credit Taunton Town, who became Weymouth’s prime rivals for the title and who now face play-offs if they are to join the Terras in getting promoted.
Molesley said: “Fair play to them (Taunton), they pushed us all the way, it was a good race, it was a good fight, and one which we have come out of on top.”
Molesley then took time to praise his players, highlighting how they have responded when questions have been asked.
Molesley was also pleased with their first-half performance.
Facing the wind, the Terras struggled to create chances, but stifled the Farnborough attack to ensure a stalemate at half-time.
Molesley said: “That group of lads has come through a lot, they have been doubted a lot and whenever they have been doubted, whenever questions have been asked they have come out fighting.
“That second half was a true Weymouth performance, that was a real difficult game.
“That wind made it really difficult and showed what a solid first-half performance that was and what a key performance that was because with the wind with us we really seized the advantage.
“No one was going to deny them (against Farnborough).
“The belief, the strength of this group was too powerful.
“We were not going to miss this opportunity.”
The atmosphere changed sharply and suddenly at the Bob Lucas Stadium, as in the 59th minute the scores were level and the title heading to Taunton, but 12 minutes later the Terras were cruising at 3-0.
When asked what he said to his side at half-time, bearing in mind that Taunton were leading and thus champions as it stood at the break, Molesley says he did not refer to the Peacocks.
Molesley said: “I didn’t mention Taunton, I don’t think we have mentioned Taunton once. It slipped into Poole, we have not had to mention anyone.
“We have only had to mention ourselves, because only we can beat ourselves.
“We believed in ourselves, we knew we had the talent, we knew we had the quality.
“We had to just keep the belief.
“When the pressure is on you have to just keep doing what you believe in and we never changed, that was a Weymouth performance out there.”