THE 2018/19 football season is fast approaching, with the South West Peninsula League and Combination League both getting under way this week.

Falmouth Town will kick-off their new SWPL Premier campaign on Saturday when they visit St Austell (kick-off 3pm) and manager Andrew Westgarth spoke to the Packet to preview the new season.

Last season

3rd in SWPL Premier

Pre-season so far

Won 6-0 v Perranporth (a), Won 2-1 v Truro City (h), Won 3-2 v Penzance (a), Won 2-1 v Plymouth Parkway (n), Won 4-1 v Helston Athletic (h), Won 2-0 v Porthleven (a)

2017-18 in a nutshell?

Excellent. To finish with the total points we got after the start that we had was fantastic and the icing on the cake was to win the cup against Tavistock.

After the much-reported game that we lost 7-0, to get them in the final day of the season and to win it was excellent and we couldn't have asked for much more really.

Best match of last season?

The best match is obviously going to be the final isn't it. To be 1-0 down, then to be 2-1 up and thinking that we're nearly there and they get one to take it to extra-time, you sort of feared the worst as they were on top and to win it 4-2 was excellent.

I'd have to put the Bodmin away game as well, 4-0. That was another special result, to give them their biggest defeat ever at home in the Peninsula era was a big achievement.

Worst match of last season?

I know the obvious one, everyone is going to say the 7-0 against Tavistock obviously because that stayed with us all season, but the one that really hurt the most was Stoke Gabriel away, 3-1.

That was awful from start to finish, getting up there, the snow, the way we played, just everything about the whole day - just awful. Just a painful defeat.

How has pre-season gone?

It's been a good pre-season, six games, six wins. We're going to take all the positives we can from that and to pick up three trophies is great for confidence and it just gives the boys a little benchmark of where we're at, you know, fitness-wise, squad-wise, and we've been quite lucky really, we've had quite a good squad most games.

That being said the personnel has changed most games but it shows the strength of our squad and everybody's had good game time.

The Parkway win [2-1 in the Charity Bowl] was especially pleasing as they beat us twice last year so it was nice to win that, and obviously winning the Dave Gardner Tournament was just nice again for the confidence, so as pre-season goes it couldn't have gone much better really.

How happy are you with your squad and your transfer business?

Yeah delighted with them, delighted with the squad. I'm sure most managers are in the same boat of you want to keep your best players or you want to keep the bulk of your squad and you want to improve and I feel like we've done that.

Jordy's [Jordan Annear] committed to us now which is fantastic news and getting Jack [Bowyer] in, a proven goalscorer at this level, he's slotted straight in and Duffy's [Martyn Duff] been the same. He's played a lot of games for us this pre-season and looks like he's been with us a long time so hopefully it's good things to come.

What are you most looking forward to about the new season?

The buzz of football, looking forward to getting back into it but just to see where we can go really because we had a good season last year and I'm quite excited to see if we can keep it up because the hardest thing in football is to do it again.

To get the top three we probably surprised a few people last year and I'm sure people will have looked at us and thought 'hold on here, what can we do to improve' and I'm sure everybody's going to come back fighting, so for me I'm excited to see how well we handle the challenge.

What are your aims for the new season?

You want to better what you did the season before so if we can get in that top three again I would see that as a success and if we can get to a cup final again, that will be great.

I think we've got the tools to do it, we've just got to go out there and try and do it. You look at some sides to win back-to-back titles or back-to-back cups, it's so hard to do that in football so we're fully aware of the challenge ahead of us.

Who are you tipping for the title?

I think whoever finishes above us, Saltash or Tavistock I would say would win it. But then I don't know enough about Launceston, I've been hearing some good things about them, Torpoint, Exmouth, they can be a surprise package because they've got new management, so I'm only basing that off last year, but you never know what can happen in football.

Top scorer?

You'll probably get your usual suspects. Obviously I'd like to think Jordy [Annear], Mattie Bucks [Matt Buchan] or Bows [Bowyer] would be up there.

I'm sure Ryan Richards will be up there, Hobbsy [ Glyn Hobbs] will be up there and you never know you could get a surprise package from someone. Sam Davey is decent, always scores goals.

Goldy [Mark Goldsworthy] and Liam [Eddy], if they stay fit they'll definitely be up there without a shadow of a doubt.