All you need is dedication - Hampton & Richmond boss Harper on life as the Beveree boss
Hampton & Richmond boss Mark Harper has revealed the two sides to life as a non-League football manager.
It has been a tough second term for Harper in sole charge at the Beveree, but he says if this season had taught him anything, it was that there were not enough hours in the day.
The Beavers started the league season on fire going nine games unbeaten, and conceding just five goals in that time.
However, just one win in 12 games through October to January saw them drop to mid-table - while eight postponements in that time also hit the club coffers hard.
Harper said: "It has been a tough few months financially and I have had to deal with a lot of things off the pitch - I had no idea it takes up so many hours in the day.
"I deal with things like making sure the bar is open, to dealing with the groundsman and keeping everyone on their toes.
"I am away from home so much that I am fortunate to have a very understanding wife, although she comes to the club as much as possible just so we can still be together."
Harper had been enjoying all the trappings of success when the season started so brightly, but he more than most now knows how quickly the tide can turn.
"Sometimes I think twice about this job. When things are going well, when the results are coming in, the fans love to chat with you.
"I'll walk through the bar and people will stop me and want to talk," he said.
"But when the results go the other way, the supporters are very quick to get on your back.
"I've been in situations where I've walked through the bar and no-one talks to you.
"In those times you have to keep the people you trust close to you, most managers will tell you that."
The Beavers go to Bognor Regis Town tonight (Tuesday).