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Burton are set to tackle Derby in play-off

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: April 26, 2014

Steve Smith (right) says Burton have started planning for next season

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BURTON Rugby Club’s Steve Smith says his squad have what it takes to compete in the National League, but that they will need “five to 10” new signings to avoid an immediate relegation.

The Crofters are one game away from promotion, as they host Derby at Peel Croft today in the Midlands One promotion play-off, kick-off 3pm.

The winners will earn a place in National League Three Midlands for the 2014-15 season.

“We saw what was in the league before - there’s some class acts who draw on big areas, big towns and cities,” said director of rugby Smith.

“If we go up, we’ll be favourites to come straight back down.

“But a lot of the lads have already intimated that they are keen to give it a go.

“We’ve got good coaches here and a good recruitment setup for bringing new players through.”

Burton have won nothing yet, and know that even if they can get past Derby, the challenge next season would be even greater.

“We’ve started planning for what would happen if we got promoted,” said Smith.

“The reality is that every week would be like playing the top two teams in this league.

“With our full 20-21 players, we could compete, but it’s when we pick up injuries that we would start to struggle.

“We would need to bring in five to 10 players to give ourselves a chance – not necessarily better players, just lots of good players.”

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