NEW Burnham manager Gifton Noel-Williams took a first look at his team this week and is convinced he can turn them into a winning side.

The Blues have lost every league and cup game this season, but there has been considerable improvement in recent weeks.

They led 2-0 before losing 3-2 in extra time to Highmoor Ibis in the FA Vase on Saturday, and then battled hard against Oxford City Nomads only to go down 2-1 on Tuesday.

But, Noel-Williams, 36, the former Watford, Stoke City and Burnley striker, believes his side can soon start to produce very good things.

He told the Observer: “They were lacking a little bit of quality here and there, but you couldn’t knock their work rate.

“I thought they showed dedication to the shirt and that they want to be a part of the club.

“They are young men who don’t get paid to come and play but showed they really love the game, and I want them to come every Saturday and Tuesday and give 100 per cent.”

Noel-Williams will work with another Watford legend, Luther Blissett, who has been in charge of the team during the first two months of the season.

The new manager added: “I believe we can make this squad really successful.

“Once I’ve settled in and the players are used to the words I say, then I believe the team will start to do some really good things.”

Despite their strong Watford connections, it was not Blissett who made the first move to bring him to The Gore.

Noel-Williams revealed: “I saw there was an opportunity at this club, so I contacted the chairman and we stayed in contact.

“I didn’t really speak to Luther about it, but he then contacted me after seeing my CV.

“He let me know a bit more about the club, what they’re trying to do and what direction they want to go.

“Now I’m happy to be part of it and, hopefully, I can be a good manager and make the club successful.”

Slough Observer:

PHOTO: Luther Blissett has jumped to the defence of Burnham chairman Gary Reeves after he was criticised by supporters in recent weeks.

Burnham’s hopes of registering their first win of the season rose on Saturday when they took a two-goal lead thanks to a 16th-minute penalty from Ibe Bangura and Stephanne Akmel’s strike just after half-time.

But two goals from Anthony White brought Highmoor level and Harrison Bayley netted the winner in the first period of extra time.

With keeper Joe Broadley sidelined with a knee injury, Burnham brought in Joe Simmonds from Ryman League club Ware on dual-registration forms.

Simmonds played well against Highmoor, but on Tuesday he spilled a free-kick that led to Oxford taking a 14th-minute lead, and he then gave away a penalty after 36 minutes.

Rash Dawood netted both goals only to be sent off on the hour mark for retaliating.

Despite applying a lot of pressure Burnham could only manage the goal scored by Bangura in the 67th minute.

The Blues are home to Longlevens this Saturday (3pm).

LUTHER Blissett has strongly defended Burnham chairman Gary Reeves after seeing him come in for heavy criticism this week.

“It’s a disgrace what some people are saying about him,” he told the Observer.

“They’re totally out of order and just don’t know the facts.

“Gary has saved this club from going under completely.

“Without him, I wouldn’t be here, Gifton would not be here, and you wouldn’t have a group of players who are playing for nothing and putting in the effort they are doing on the pitch.”

He added: “There are those outside who appear to want to destroy the club.

“I wish they would come down to see what is going on, speak to us and see what Gary has done, and is continuing to do for this club.”