LIVERSEDGE manager Jonathan Rimmington believes major personnel changes have been the reason behind his side’s stunning start to the season, but it is one old hand who is still proving to be the star attraction.

Rimmington, whose side visit Bradford district rivals Eccleshill United tomorrow, said most of his starting XI is different from last season, when Sedge finished a lowly 13th in the Toolstation Northern Counties East League Premier Division with a goal difference of -24.

But one player who has been with him since he stepped up to the manager’s role in 2015, striker Joe Walton, continues to deliver the goods.

The big man has already netted 13 times this season, including seven in the league to see Sedge up to third, with Rimmington keen to praise the forward’s unique talents.

He said: “Joe’s a good lad, and although he might not be the best striker in the league, he’s the most difficult to play against.

“He doesn’t really close his man down and as he’s a big guy at 16 and a half stone, he can’t always do the work rate side of things.

“But he comes alive when the ball comes to him and when it does, the defenders had better get ready.

“He’s strong, quick, good in the air and on the deck.”

Walton is being helped along this season by a new support cast. Asked what was behind the turnaround from last season, Rimmington said: “Personnel. One hundred per cent.

“We’ve changed it up from last season and there’s eight players in our best starting team now who weren’t here before.

“We’re still not playing as well as what I think we can, there’s miles more to come from us.”

Sedge will need to be close to their best if they are to get three points at Eccleshill tomorrow, with Rimmington impressed by how the Eagles have turned their season around following a bad start.

He said: “Last year they beat us twice but they’ve changed their team around, and recruited a lot of players in pre-season.

“I thought maybe they’d got it wrong, but they’ve signed a couple of players from a higher level, like Eli Hey, who I wish I had up front, and they’re coming into form.

“I don’t care about names though. For me, you’ve got to make sure you get the right people, doing the right job, at the right time.”

Rimmington added: “I’ve been watching games this season and I’d say we’re a top six team at the moment, nothing more, and Eccleshill won’t be far away from that either.

“It will be a good, tough game as we’re proving difficult to beat too.”

Sedge did lose on Wednesday night though, with a weakened team defeated 2-1 at Campion in the West Riding County Cup First Round.