Burgess back in Blue

Kev Burgess
Kev Burgess

Whitby Town defender Kevin Burgess has admitted that he won’t be thinking about his future until the end of the season and the Blues are safe from the threat of relegation.

The Turnbull Ground legend rejoined the club on loan in early December from National League North Darlington, after two years away from the club with the Quakers.

Blues supporters will be hoping to keep the defender beyond his current spell, but he has admitted that it’s not something on his mind at the moment.

“What happens at the end of the season isn’t something I’ve really thought about,” Burgess told the Whitby Gazette.

“Right now, I’m just focused on playing and winning games of football with Whitby Town.

“I’ll talk to Darlington and Whitby at the end of the season and see what the situation is with both clubs.

“I still have a year left on my contract at Darlington, so I have that to consider. We’ll see what happens.”

The defender has been an ever-present since moving back to the Turnbull Ground, and has extended his loan until the end of the season after having a big impact.

Initially, Burgess’ loan spell with the club came as he looked to regain match fitness after a long injury lay-off and a difficult start to the campaign.

However, with improved performances from Darlington and his impressive displays in Blue, an opportunity opened up for the Quakers’ club captain to remain at the Whitby, and from the outset, it was an offer he couldn’t turn down.

“The start of the season was probably the longest I’ve had off from football,” Burgess added.

“I think it was six months, which was really the first long-term injury I’d had so it was something new, so all in all the first half of the season was disappointing for me.

“I never had chance to come back to full fitness with Darlington, and with the change of management it became more difficult.

“However, I got the chance to go out on loan. I had a few clubs that I could have chosen from, but obviously I came to Whitby Town.

“From the outset I gelled with all the lads, I’ve gelled with the management and we’ve got off to a good run. I’ve enjoyed it ever since coming back.

“I didn’t think twice when Whitby came in. There were a few clubs I’ve never been at that wanted me on loan, but as soon as Whitby were interested I wanted to go there.

“I know a few lads from my last time here a couple of years ago. A lot of players have changed but there’s a couple that stayed that persuaded me as well to come back.

“I think the club in general, the fans, the history I have with the club and the good memories I have, it was a no-brainer when Whitby came in.”

During Burgess’ previous spell at the Turnbull Ground, supporters were vocal in their backing for the defender to take the captain’s armband.

Blues supporters then never got their wish, with Mark Robinson continuing in the role through Burgess’ time with the club.

Recent weeks though have seen club captain Steven Snaith watch from the sidelines through suspension, and Chris Hardy wasted no time in passing on the armband to the combative centre-half.

“I’ve always played like a skipper to be honest,” Burgess continued.

“You always get two or three leaders in a team, it’s very rare that you get 11, but I’ve always played with a captain’s mentality.

“If I can bring 10% out of everybody’s game around me then we’re moving in the right direction.

“I hate losing. My will to win is huge. I want to win every single game I play in, and I really mean it when I say that. When I step over that white line, it’s 100% focus on getting three points.

“Ste (Snaith) is obviously the club captain and I’m just filling in for him. He’s a great young lad and he’s someone that we need back in the side, but in the meantime it’s been a pleasure to wear the armband for Whitby.”

The Seasiders are due to host Rushall Olympic on Saturday, having not played since February 24, a 1-0 defeat to Witton Albion.

The defender has been frustrated at the lack of recent action for his side, and admits that every is now raring to get back on the field and get playing again.

“Everyone that knows me knows that I hate watching football in the stands or on the sidelines,” Burgess added.

“I want to be playing, I love the game and the lads are the same. We’re all just itching for a match now.

“It’s been a couple of weeks but the lads are looking sharp in training. We had a good session on Tuesday but the lads just want to get back out there now.

“Saturday is another massive game for us. We don’t want to be known as a team that just survived, so I think we need to kick on.

“There’s plenty of talent in this team. We’re going out to win and we’re looking to gather up as many points as we can to finish as high as we can now.”