LUCA Collins was pleased to be able to prove his "worth" to Witham Town after being given his chance in a breakthrough year in senior football.

The Witham Town goalkeeper's contribution to Witham's Bostik League division north campaign was recognised at the end of the season by the club's fans as he won the Supporters' Player of the Year award.

The 19-year-old knows that it is unusual for a young keeper to be given the level responsibility placed in him by boss Mark Ashford, but he was pleased to be able to repay his manager's trust with an excellent season that has seen his own reputation blossom.

"It's always nice to win an award and that one from the fans was a lovely recognition," said Collins.

"It can be hard for a young keeper to be given a chance like I've had at Witham and hopefully I've proved my worth. "The fans have recognised how I've played, but for me, it's all about the team.

"We had a brilliant end to the season because when we really needed it, we won to make sure we stayed up."

Collins kept a clean sheet on the final weekend of Witham's season as they won 2-0 at Basildon United to make sure they avoided relegation from division north.

The Town keeper was pleased he and his team-mates were able to get it over the line at the end and feels the capability is there for them to press on next year and build on their first season together.

"It was good for it to finish in the way that it did as it was my first season at this level," he added.

"We didn't want it to get to the point that it did, but to stay up on the last day in the way that we did was a great experience for all of us.

"We had had Jody Brown come in and talk to us before the last game about how, when he was manager at Heybridge (Swifts), they had stayed up on the final day of the season and then pushed on the following year.

"I think you have to feel the lows to get the highs the next season.

"We've all been through that together and I feel it's changed us all.

"I think next season could be a big one and we can definitely push on together.

"We beat some big teams this year and if we can do it against sides in the lower half then we'll be doing alright."