Men's Football Update

Men's Football Update

An update on plans for the new season from the Men's Footballing Team

Stuart Fuller
Credit:
Stuart Fuller

After an absence of nine months, we can finally look forward to the return of football tomorrow when we make the short trip down to face Peacehaven & Telscombe at 3pm. As far as we are aware, there are no restrictions on who can attend the game but just a reminder to follow the rules put in place by our hosts, which may include wearing face coverings and maintaining social distancing measures.

Our squad for tomorrow's game will feature a number of our Under18s players, some first team squad members and trialists. Whilst the full squad returned to pre-season training three weeks ago, having spent so long without any competitive action, many of the first team players will continue to train for another week before they are given any game time. Tony and Joe continue to build the squad with a number of potential new players being looked at during training.

We have so far announced the signings of Joe Taylor, Bradley Pritchard, Lewis Carey and Freddie Parker, along with Nic D'Arienzo and Brad Santos from our squad last season. There are a number of other players who have committed to us for next season and these will be announced over the next few weeks. The management team have been working very hard to build a squad that will hopefully play some attractive, attacking footballing in what promises to be one of the most competitive leagues we have played in.

One of the reasons why we have moved our pre-season preparations to Tunbridge Wells is so we can attract a wider range of players. We have been hampered in the past to some extent by our location, which has meant a reliance on more local players. However, with the market in Sussex very competitive, we have often lost out to teams such as Eastbourne Borough and Worthing. Basing ourselves outside of the area for pre-season has allowed us to bring in players that previously we would not have been able to attract.

We have said goodbye to a number of players from last season and wish them all the best. Ronnie Conlon, Nathan Stroomberg-Clarke and Tegan Freeman have all headed down the A27 to Whitehawk whilst James Beresford has decided to join Eastbourne Borough. Luke Blewden has trained with us in the last few weeks but has decided that he will not be returning to the Pan this season. Luke has been a fantastic player for us on and off the pitch and we wish him well.

As a reminder, we will be "on the road" for the next five weeks before returning to the Dripping Pan for one last pre-season game against Steve King's Dartford FC on Saturday 7th August. For those who haven't had a chance to get down to the Rook Inn in the last few weeks I can tell you that the pitch is looking fantastic and huge credit to Roger and Chalky for their hard work. There's also been a lot of work around the Pan carried out by the Supporters Club, other volunteers and our Operations Manager James which has given the place a real facelift. There's plenty more tasks still to undertake but we are looking forward to welcoming fans back in a few weeks. By then we will also have the new bar open at the top of the Philcox Terrace.

Finally, we will be launching season tickets for next season early next week. They will be priced the same on the Men's side as last season, as too will on the gate admission, with a small increase for Women's and Super Season Tickets which reflects they will have one more home league game than last season. I'd like to thank all of the ticket holders from last season who agreed to donate their season ticket money to the club when football was halted for fans - that was a really generous gesture and really appreciated.

I hope to see as many of you as possible at our pre-season games and Come On You Rooks!

After an absence of nine months, we can finally look forward to the return of football tomorrow when we make the short trip down to face Peacehaven & Telscombe at 3pm. As far as we are aware, there are no restrictions on who can attend the game but just a reminder to follow the rules put in place by our hosts, which may include wearing face coverings and maintaining social distancing measures.

Our squad for tomorrow's game will feature a number of our Under18s players, some first team squad members and trialists. Whilst the full squad returned to pre-season training three weeks ago, having spent so long without any competitive action, many of the first team players will continue to train for another week before they are given any game time. Tony and Joe continue to build the squad with a number of potential new players being looked at during training.

We have so far announced the signings of Joe Taylor, Bradley Pritchard, Lewis Carey and Freddie Parker, along with Nic D'Arienzo and Brad Santos from our squad last season. There are a number of other players who have committed to us for next season and these will be announced over the next few weeks. The management team have been working very hard to build a squad that will hopefully play some attractive, attacking footballing in what promises to be one of the most competitive leagues we have played in.

One of the reasons why we have moved our pre-season preparations to Tunbridge Wells is so we can attract a wider range of players. We have been hampered in the past to some extent by our location, which has meant a reliance on more local players. However, with the market in Sussex very competitive, we have often lost out to teams such as Eastbourne Borough and Worthing. Basing ourselves outside of the area for pre-season has allowed us to bring in players that previously we would not have been able to attract.

We have said goodbye to a number of players from last season and wish them all the best. Ronnie Conlon, Nathan Stroomberg-Clarke and Tegan Freeman have all headed down the A27 to Whitehawk whilst James Beresford has decided to join Eastbourne Borough. Luke Blewden has trained with us in the last few weeks but has decided that he will not be returning to the Pan this season. Luke has been a fantastic player for us on and off the pitch and we wish him well.

As a reminder, we will be "on the road" for the next five weeks before returning to the Dripping Pan for one last pre-season game against Steve King's Dartford FC on Saturday 7th August. For those who haven't had a chance to get down to the Rook Inn in the last few weeks I can tell you that the pitch is looking fantastic and huge credit to Roger and Chalky for their hard work. There's also been a lot of work around the Pan carried out by the Supporters Club, other volunteers and our Operations Manager James which has given the place a real facelift. There's plenty more tasks still to undertake but we are looking forward to welcoming fans back in a few weeks. By then we will also have the new bar open at the top of the Philcox Terrace.

Finally, we will be launching season tickets for next season early next week. They will be priced the same on the Men's side as last season, as too will on the gate admission, with a small increase for Women's and Super Season Tickets which reflects they will have one more home league game than last season. I'd like to thank all of the ticket holders from last season who agreed to donate their season ticket money to the club when football was halted for fans - that was a really generous gesture and really appreciated.

I hope to see as many of you as possible at our pre-season games and Come On You Rooks!