Welcome to The Dripping Pan for our BetVictor Isthmian Premier League game with Enfield Town. Here is your complimentary matchday programme, which we call the Progcast.

In today’s issue (click the link to jump straight to the relevant section):

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DARREN FROM THE DUGOUT

Hear Darren’s thoughts on today’s game by clicking the Play button below:

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DARREN & CO HIT A DOUBLE CENTURY

Today is Darren Freeman’s 200th game in charge, along with his management team of Ross Standen and Tony Coade. Can you answer two quiz questions set by our resident statto Kevin Brook. Answers at the bottom of the page – click here to jump straight to them.

  1. Name the eight players who’ve made the most appearances under Darren?
  2. Name the starting XI for Darren’s first ever game in charge at Grays Athletic
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TRAFFIC WARNING AND CAR PARKING

If you are travelling the game by car today, please note that Southover High Street (the B2193) is closed. The best way to reach The Dripping Pan is to travel in via Station Street, past Lewes train station.

Our secondary car park in Sussex Downs College will be open for parking. Drive past the ground on Mountfield Road and the college is about 500 yards on the left. Please don’t use street parking where possible.

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CHAIRMAN’S NOTES

Good afternoon all and welcome back to the Pan for the start of the 2019/20 Isthmian League Premier Division season. I’d like to welcome our good friends and fellow fan-owned Enfield Town to East Sussex.  We’ve shared some exciting games in the last few years with the Towners, none more so that our meeting here last season when two late goals from Billy Bricknell cancelled out our 2-0 lead. 

For those who haven’t been to any of our games here in pre-season I am sure you will notice a few changes in and around the ground. None of these improvements happen by magic so I’d like to once again thank our amazing volunteers for all their hard work. Our pitch looks outstanding, with Roger working his magic during the summer, the new Rook Inn looks magnificent thanks to the work of Steve Keegan and his team, whilst you will also notice that you can now go cashless with card payment points at the turnstiles, the club shop and of course, the bar.

There’s also a number of changes in the squad and for those again who haven’t seen any of our pre-season games, there’s an introduction to the new faces elsewhere in this progcast. Unfortunately, we go into the new campaign with injuries to key players. Both Brinky and Leon should hopefully be back in the next few weeks, Harry soon after but Ronnie is still a few months away despite ramping up his rehabilitation. Obviously we have said goodbye to a few faces although some haven’t gone far and we will find ourselves up against them this season.

In this issue of our excellent progcast, I have written a few notes on the difficulties we have faced this summer in trying to build the squad and how the shifting footballing landscape has hampered that. Talking of on the field changes I have also tried to summarise the changes to the laws of the game that will almost certainly grab the back page headlines both in the professional and Non-League game in the coming months. Having seen a couple of games in different leagues this year I’ve already seen players, management and officials trying to make sense of the changes.

On Tuesday we head down the A27 to Worthing. I’m not sure if our collective hearts can cope with a repeat of either of the 4-3 games from last season but I am sure we will once again travel in big numbers and get behind the team. We have new trips to look forward to Cheshunt and Bowers & Pitsea, whilst we renew our acquaintance with Cray Wanderers and of course, Horsham at their new stadium.

Enjoy the game and, of course, the season.  Come on you Rooks!

Stuart

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BEST WISHES, PETE

Everyone at the club was saddened to hear that Peter Hiscox was taken unwell recently. Pete (pictured here between Terry and Derrick Parris) is a club legend, a supporters club stalwart, a former club secretary and a familiar face here at the Pan. We hope he’s back on his regular perch at the back of the main stand soon.

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TODAY’S MATCH MUSIC

Today’s match playlist is compiled by our very own John Peel (not that one). Click on the player below to listen to the tracks on Spotify.

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THANK YOU FROM THE SUPPORTERS CLUB

A big THANK YOU from Lewes CFC Supporters Club

The new season is upon us and, as usual, the Supporters Club volunteers will be doing their bit to fundraise for Lewes FC. Without you supporters generously supporting things such as Golden Goal, Pan for Gold, Player Sponsorship and Matchday Raffles there would be far less funds available to the club. So we at the Supporters Club thought you might be interested in how much money was raised last season, and an outline of how it was raised. After all, this is Lewes FC, and we like transparency.

Many thanks to Barbara and her team of helpers for the organisation and selling of Matchday Raffle tickets. Supporters paying £1 a strip managed to raise £4,458 over the season. Also thanks to everyone who donated prizes to keep the actual money spent on prizes down to a couple of hundred pounds.

The legendary Ethel and not-so-legendary PJ managed to collect £5,568 by selling matchday Golden Goal tickets at £1 each. £1,400 of this was given back as prize money to the lucky winners.

Another £1,300 was raised by Player Sponsorship, kindly arranged by David, whose Pan for Gold monthly draw brought in another £1,500.

David and Barbara’s sterling efforts in the Rook Inn selling drinks and food for non-Men’s first team games and social events, such as Nick Geall’s very popular quiz nights, raised £10,423. Many, many thanks to them and those who helped out.

So what did all this mean for Lewes FC? Well we are pleased to announce that the Supporters Club was able to donate £22,117 to the club during the season 2018/2019. That is a record figure according to the books. Looking at it another way, it is approaching a quarter of the men’s first team playing budget!

Supporters Club members also assist the club in the production and distribution of season tickets and ownership packages and in this way make useful savings on postage costs.

Finally, a mention for Gary the Badge. Although separate from the Supporters Club, he managed to put £2,000 directly into the 12th Man Fund all on his own with his badge shop. He will be back this season with new stock. Apparently the friendly against FC United of Manchester was a record day for badge sales so he’s off to a flyer already this season.

So a huge THANK YOU to each and every one of you that contributed in any way to any of the above schemes and events, and we hope that you will continue to support the club in this way to help keep Lewes FC the successful club that it is.

Paul Johnson (Treasurer, Lewes CFC Supporters Club)

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NEW SEASON, NEW LAWS

Stuart Fuller runs through the new laws that have been introduced this summer

It used to be the exception rather than the rule that we would see changes to the laws of the game at the start of the season, but it seems that the group of individuals who set and review the laws of the game every year, The International Football Association Board or IFAB for short, have been busier than normal in their ideas this summer, meaning there’s a few new changes that we all need to be aware of before we start making a fool of ourselves trying to call out the officials for making mistakes during the game.

Some of the new changes won’t be relevant to us down here in the Non-Leagues, such as the changes to Law 5 regarding VAR reviews, or the fact that we can’t refer to those mid-half breaks as “drinks”, instead now known as “cooling” as per the amendment to Law 7, but others will certainly have an impact on football at every level.

Below is a brief summary of the relevant rule changes and how they may impact the football we see this season.

Law 3 – A player who is being substituted MUST leave the field at the nearest point on the boundary line, unless otherwise directed by the referee.  In theory this should speed up substitutions but it may also lead to an assistant referee making a wrong call by assuming a substituted player on the far side of the pitch is active.  From a personal point of view, it will make the job of the PA announcer even harder when the substitute board breaks down or isn’t used.

Law 5 has a number of changes but the most interesting one is that team officials can now be given yellow and red cards for misconduct.  If the culprit can’t be identified, then the most senior member of the team (in rank rather than age) will receive the card.  Another change is that if a penalty kick is awarded and the taker needs to receive treatment, he is allowed to remain on the pitch and take the kick.  This could lead to some interesting time wasting tactics if the team awarded the penalty are already winning. 

Law 8 sees a change to the coin toss.  At the moment if a team wins the toss they choose the end they wish to attack.  Now they can elect to kick-off instead, which is basically a revision of the rule back to what it was originally.  Law 8 also partly covers the changes to the dropped ball rules.  There are now no contested drop-balls and if an incident occurs where it is necessary to restart the game with a drop-ball, the team that last touched the ball will be given the uncontested ball and every other player (of both teams) has to be at least four metres away.

Law 9 covers the other part of the dropped-ball situation.  If the ball hits any match official and goes into the goal, causes possession to change or starts an attacking move for the opposing team, the team that last touched the ball will be given an uncontested drop ball (this happened in the Pre-Season game last Saturday against Whitehawk as James Hammond tried to play a ball forward and it hit the referee).  Again, some clever players may look to deliberately play a ball off an official to get out of a pressurised situation and get a drop ball.

One of the most talked about changes comes under Law 12 where the rules for Handball have been re-written for “greater clarity/consistency” which we all know is going to result in the opposite effect.  Essentially, if the ball strikes an arm or hand which is away from the body, expect to be penalised.  End of.  No mitigation for “ball to hand”, trying to move the arm out of the way or not being able to get out of the way quick enough.

One strange rule in Law 12 that I am still trying to work out is that an ‘illegal’ (and that word is written exactly like that in the official law change sheet from IFAB) handball offence by the goalkeeper in their own penalty area is not sanctioned with a yellow or red card.  I have no idea in what circumstance this works, apart from handling a backpass unless I’ve missed the introduction of “rush” goalkeepers as per playground rule 34.B.

Another one in Law 12 that could be open to abuse. If, after a throw-in or deliberate pass from a team-mate, the goalkeeper unsuccessfully kicks or tries to kick the ball to release it into play, the goalkeeper can then handle the ball.  A savvy keeper could easily pretend to kick and miss to then be able to pick the ball up.  The referee then has to interpret whether his attempt at a kick was deliberate and if not, award an indirect free-kick and caution the goalkeeper.

The use of the defensive wall is covered in Law 13 with the major change being that when there is a defensive ‘wall’ of at least three players, all attacking team players must be at least 1 metre from the ‘wall’.  This stops those situations where attackers are able to muscle their way into the wall, creating a gap for the kick taker to take advantage.

Penalty kick changes come under Law 14.  The goalkeeper isn’t allowed to be touching the frame of the goal and must have at least part of one foot on, or in line with, the goal line when a penalty kick is taken; they also cannot stand behind the line

And finally.  One big change that we saw in operation last Saturday is covered in Law 16.  At goal kicks, the ball is in play once it is kicked and clearly moves; it does not have to leave the penalty area.  However, the attacking player(s) must be outside of the penalty area before they can re-enter the area to challenge for the ball.

What could possibly go wrong?

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TODAY’S OPPOSITION: ENFIELD TOWN

Enfield FC had been one of the most successful non-league teams of the sixties, seventies and eighties, but having fallen into financial difficulties they sold their Southbury Road ground in 1999, playing thereafter outside the town. This prompted the formation of a new club, Enfield Town, by the Enfield Supporters’ Trust in 2001 following the breakdown of an agreement to take on the running of troubled Enfield FC. (Enfield FC went into liquidation in 2007, re-forming as Enfield 1893.)

This afternoon’s opponents, Enfield Town (thus not to be confused with either now defunct Enfield or Enfield 1893), were admitted to the Essex Senior League in 2001. The club’s first season saw them finish second in the league and win the League Cup, also winning the Capital Counties Feeder Leagues Trophy and the Middlesex Senior Charity Cup. They won the Essex Senior League the following season, but were not promoted due to failing ground grading.

They won the Essex Senior League for a second time in 2005 and were promoted to Division One East of the Southern League, being transferred to Division One North of the Isthmian League in 2006. In October 2008 the club succeeded in finding a home in Enfield, moving with the support of Enfield Council to the Queen Elizabeth II Stadium. The ground was formally opened in November 2011 with a match against a Tottenham Hotspur XI.

In 2012 Enfield Town won promotion to the Isthmian League Premier Division via the play-offs. They won the Supporters Direct Cup in both 2012 and 2013. A fourth-place league finish in 2017 saw Enfield Town qualify for a play-off place where they were beaten by Dulwich Hamlet. Last season they finished 17th.

In June 2017, the club were awarded the Charter Standard Community Club of the Year by the Middlesex Football Association in recognition of their work in the local community. Earlier this year the club hosted a number of matches (including the final) as part of the Confederation of Independent Football Associations (CONIFA) 2018 Football World Cup.

There wasn’t much between us last season: we drew 2-2 at home and 1-1 away, Enfield Town finishing in tenth place, one point and one place above us.

MEET THE SQUAD

Andy Leese – Manager

Andy took over the managerial reins for the 2017-18 season following a  successful 11-year reign at Southern League Chesham in which he guided them up to Step 3, and into the play-offs three times. Enfield subsequently progressed to the 4th Qualifying Round of the FA Cup, taking National League outfit Maidstone United to a replay. Andy steered the club to the Velocity Trophy (Isthmian League Cup) won in April 2019.

Nathan McDonald – Goalkeeper

28 year-old Nathan signed from Braintree Town for his first spell at the club in the summer of 2014 and went on to be an ever-present in the league for three years. An England C international, he moved back to Braintree in time for the 2017-18 season, helping them to promotion via the play-offs. He switched to Chelmsford City in August 2018 before a move back to the QEII Stadium in May 2019.

Tyler Forde – Goalkeeper

19 year-old Tyler arrived at the club from West Ham United, where he had signed a scholarship in 2016 and gone on to make a number of Under 18 team appearances.

Jon Muleba – Defender

23-year-old Jon started his career in the youth ranks at Chelsea before joining AFC Bournemouth’s Under 21 squad. He had loan spells at Poole Town, Gosport Borough and Bishop’s Stortford before joining Folkestone Invicta in July 2016. Shortly afterwards he moved to Enfield Town, making 45 appearances, before following manager Bradley Quinton to Braintree Town in the summer of 2017. After playing a key role in the Iron’s 2017-18 promotion campaign, he moved on to Kingstonian in February 2019 before committing to Town in the close season.

Joe Payne – Defender

Joe originally joined Town from Barnet on loan in March 2019. He had been at the Hive since 2010, graduating through the youth set-up to make his first team debut against Peterborough United in the Checkatrade Trophy in November 2016, shortly after signing a professional contract. Primarily a left-back who can also play centrally, he scored on his Town debut in a 3-1 win at Whitehawk, before penning a permanent deal in the summer.

Marc Weatherstone – Defender

 A December 2018 arrival, Marc started his career as a youngster at West Ham United and then had spells at Barnet, Luton Town and Dagenham & Redbridge. Marc had moved to Dulwich Hamlet in the summer of 2016 after nine years and over 400 appearances for Wingate & Finchley, where he had been club captain. After helping Hamlet to promotion, he returned to Summers Lane to break the W&F appearances record when he turned out for the club for the 452nd time at Potters Bar Town last November.  

Dan Rumens – Defender

23 year-old Dan signed from Braintree Town in July 2017, having previously represented Dagenham & Redbridge, Histon and Bishops Stortford.  He has played both in the centre and on the left in recent seasons.

Sam Hatton – Defender

Sam is an experienced player who has represented clubs such as AFC Wimbledon, Aldershot Town, Grimsby Town and Welling United. An England C International, he signed for Town in time to make his competitive debut in a 3-2 win at Folkestone Invicta on the opening day of last season.

Junior Mubiayi – Defender/Midfielder

A young utility player, Junior has progressed through the youth ranks at the QEII Stadium, and he stepped up to the first team squad in 2017-18, scoring his first goal for the club in a 2-2 draw at Dorking Wanderers in April 2018. He has also had experience at Hertford Town.

Brad Empson – Defender/Midfielder

Brad came through the Town youth set-up and was with the Watford academy for a couple of years before being released. He can operate equally well at full-back or in midfield.

Lewis Taaffe – Midfielder

Lewis, 27, returned to Concord Rangers in July 2017 after spells at Hemel Hempstead Town and Billericay Town. He went on to make over 150 appearances for the Beachboys and was a firm fans’ favourite with his energetic style.  He has also had experience with Leyton Orient and Histon and joined Town at the start of last season.

Scott Thomas – Midfielder

Formerly with Hemel Hempstead Town, Chesham United, Boreham Wood and St Albans City, 29-year-old Scott made the short move from Boreham Wood, where he had won promotion to the National League, to St Albans in August 2015. He was subsequently on a dual registration arrangement with Royston Town for a spell and featured in the Crows team that overcame Town 2-0 in the FA Trophy in October 2017.

Sam Youngs – Midfielder

A former Chesham United player, 28 year-old Sam originally made his Generals’ debut at Didcot Town in March 2011, and then, after a spell away, returned to the Meadow in the summer of 2015. He has enjoyed three spells at Rugby Town, including scoring a dozen goals in season 2012/13, and has also spent time at Redditch United, Hemel Hempstead Town, Banbury United, Ware and Halesowen Town.

James Potton – Midfielder

 29-year-old winger James was originally released by Watford at U16 level and had a spell with Hemel Hempstead reserves before going off to university. Upon his return he joined Chesham United, playing 186 games in a four-year stint, scoring 55 goals. He moved back to Hemel in 2014 and subsequently spent several seasons at Conference South level, including netting for the Tudors in a 2014-15 FA Cup first round 3-1 exit at Bury, before a move to Royston Town in June 2017. He signed for Town in July.

Muhammadu Faal – Forward

22 year-old Muhammadu joined the club from Kingstonian in December. Hackney born, he started his career with Italian club L’Aquila, making a number of appearances in Serie D, before joining Dulwich Hamlet at the start of the 2017-18 campaign. Last season he was out with injuries, but still managed 3 goals in just 5 starts.

Sam Bentinck – Forward

Sam joined Enfield Town from Aveley who he had helped to the runners up spot in last season’s Bostik North Division. Previous clubs include Brentwood Town, Coggeshall Town, Concord Rangers, Heybridge Swifts, AFC Hornchurch, AFC Sudbury, Tonbridge Angels and VCD Athletic.

Josh Davison – Forward

A former Peterborough United youngster, Josh has enjoyed loan spells at St Neots Town, Wisbech and Barking. He has been a regular for Enfield’s Under 23s, and has now forced himself into the firstbteam squad.

Billy Bricknell – Forward

Enfield-born Billy, 31, moved from Chelmsford City to Billericay Town in November 2016, having previously had a stint at Dover Athletic. As well as a couple of spells with Billericay, he has also appeared for Leyton, Ebbsfleet United and Maidstone United. He netted his 250th career goal in November 2018.

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Lewes Men's squad photo 19-20

The Supporters Club are once again selling player and management sponsorship to raise money for the club. Grab your player before your favourite goes!

Costs are as follows: Home Kit – £75. Away Kit – £75. Training Kit – £25. Boots £25.

Contact: david.arnold@me.com or see David or Barbara on match days.

Thanks to the following sponsors who’ve signed up so far!

DARREN FREEMAN

HOME: REG FREEMAN

JORDY MONGOY

HOME: SAM & JOE BARKER

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THE LONG SLOG OF SUMMER

Chairman Stuart Fuller on a busy summer behind the scenes at The Dripping Pan

As the final whistle blew in our home game against AFC Hornchurch at the end of April, the general perception of most fans is that everyone involved in the club, whether that be Daz and Ross, the players or us Directors disappears for the summer, putting football to one side for a few weeks at least. I hate to disappoint but the concept of any type of break for those who work behind the scenes in the summer is completely false. Whilst we may appear to be on holiday, the phone doesn’t stop ringing and the texts/emails/WhatsApp’s don’t stop pinging on our phones.

Whilst a lot of hard work is visible to most, such as our fantastic pitch, our new goal nets or the redevelopment of the Rook Inn, those of us who work on the football side have to get to work immediately in building our new squads, trying to steal a march on our rivals in securing the services of new players, or ensuring those we want to retain are kept.

This summer has been the most challenging that we have faced in trying to build a squad in the ten years I have been at the club. Part of that is down to building a squad that can go above and beyond what we achieved last season, retaining the players we want and need whilst staying within our modest (and there’s no denying it is) budget, whilst trying to add to the existing skills and capabilities from across the footballing world. Darren has proved himself time and time again in being able to both find and then agree deals with players who deliver for us.  One of my favourite sayings rings true here – price is only an issue in the absence of value. 

But this pre-season some of the money being thrown around both in our division but also in the Isthmian League in general is simply unsustainable.  Time and time again Daz, Barry, Ross and I have been left flabbergasted after hearing the demands of a potential new player or a story about some of the movements in the league. Whilst we are looking to “kick-on” in the Isthmian Premier League, it seems that below us, especially in the South-East division, virtually every club in Sussex is hell-bent on winning promotion at all costs, something we can attest to from information about the deals they are doing or have done.

In the first part of the summer our fans forum was a-buzz as news of our squad building was thin on the ground. Despite reassurances that there was a lot of unseen activity happening behind the scenes (as is now apparent from the 25+ players we have used in pre-season and possibly the biggest squad we have ever taken into the start of a season), we decided not to announce every deal there and then, wanting to spread the news of players who had either signed or re-signed over a number of weeks.  The other part was trying to handle a number of different situations that had arisen with existing players that were causing us a headache. Whilst it is not correct to go into specific details, the following represented some of the issues that could have arisen this summer.

“Oh, we didn’t realise he was already on a contract”. It’s a very simple process to check whether a player is contracted or not. Yet still we have not only seen illegal approaches to our players during the summer but offers that simply destabilise the relationships we have with them. All of a sudden a player thinks he is now worth the value of the offer, irrespective if that is a fair price or not. Perhaps the motivation was just to destabilise the squad, knowing that the player may talk to other teammates about his new “value”. 

“It’s not about the money”.  We hear this so often yet in 99% of cases it is about the money. A former goalkeeper of ours moved for a £10 per week increase a few years ago, despite the fact that he would incur more than that in travel to training and to games each week. It is only fair that players are rewarded for their performances and their loyalty but in the current climate, when we’ve not got any additional funds for the playing budget over last season, we have to ensure that we treat the whole squad fairly. Once again, price is only an issue in the absence of value.

“Work commitments mean I’ve got to quit playing football”.  In many instances this is true.  Chris Winterton quit at the end of the 2017/18 due to family and work commitments, turning out once for Langney Wanderers in an emergency last season, and one of the main reasons why Billy Medlock was released was due to his increased work pressures, although we’ve also seen one previous squad member leave to concentrate on his work only to reappear at a rival club during the pre-season period. 

“My agent says…”.  Ninety percent of the agents or intermediaries that we deal with are decent people, understanding who we are as a club and simply trying to get a deal for their clients. And then there’s the other ten percent who think they can hold the club to ransom by demanding ridiculous amounts for their “clients”. Even when the club has consistently said the demands are far and above what we are either prepared or able to offer, they still believe that the best negotiation tactic is to keep repeating the demands, wasting hours of everyone’s time.

“I know I am on contract but…”.  Non-League football is different to the professional game in that it has two contractual status. A player can essentially be non-contracted or contracted. The former means that the club agree to pay a player a fixed amount per week if he plays, and in return any other club can put in a 7-day approach, which allows them to try to negotiate with the player after a 7-day period has elapsed, essentially giving the player’s club an opportunity to offer an improved deal. 

The latter is a formal written agreement between the club and a player, whereby the player agrees to fulfil his duties (to train, to be available to play, to not bring himself or the club into disrepute, etc) in return for a set weekly wage. If a contracted player is injured, suspended or dropped, they are still paid their weekly wage. It is a risk on the part of the club but, likewise, if another club is interested in the player they will have to compensate the player’s club in paying a transfer fee, or agree that the club rip up the contract, perhaps in exchange for a pre-season friendly or something similar (the famous case of Gillingham signing Tony Cascarino from Crockenhill FC in 1982 for 12 tracksuits for instance).

Imagine then a case when a player unilaterally decides that he can’t play for the club anymore, for a variety of reasons.  The club had paid the player when he was suspended and injured last season, so why should the club now be expected to suffer as the player doesn’t want to fulfil their contractual obligations.  Should the club still be liable to continue to pay their weekly wage? What about if the player simply disappears off the face of the earth, becoming uncontactable and failing to report for duty.  Our only recourse is to go through a set FA disciplinary procedure that certainly favours the player and not the club.

Silence does not always equate to non-activity, something to bear in mind next season when we enter that pre-season period. Non-League football has changed in the last couple of seasons and not necessarily in a good way.  Players and their representatives demand more, yet it has become harder and harder to drive the additional revenue required to match their demands.  Add in the cost of managing a venue that is over 125 years old and it has become a summer of discontent for those of us trying to build the best possible squad for the available budget.  Now that the season has started, perhaps we can have that quiet holiday!

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STODGEBUSTERS’ SUMMER TOUR

Our loyal band of supporters go in search of pre-season sustinance

Whilst we quite like the summer and the warm(ish) weather we don’t like the lack of proper football. The Nations League and Women’s World Cup just doesn’t cut the mustard for the Stodgebusters. The Bostik BetVictor Premier League is where it all happens for us. 

A sure sign that the season is getting close is when we rock up at the annual skittles tournament at the Grange Gardens. This year team “Come On You Rooks!” consisted of three Stodgies: Gary the Badge, Roly and PJ. They were joined by sterling club volunteers Colin and Chunky, and ably captained, as always by Pitch Artist Roger. We were drawn to play on Tuesday and the top seven teams of about thirty competing would qualify for the finals on Friday.

We haven’t done very well in recent years and we really can’t put our finger on why considering the enviable amount of talent within the team. Anyway, we were determined to do better and book our place for Friday. We were steady enough throughout the evening without really pulling up any trees, or getting any strikes, and ended up with a pretty average score. Well, somehow that score was good enough to secure second spot on the night. We were chuffed, although in reality it was probably due to the other teams simply being more rubbish than us.

So, we were back on Friday to do battle for the trophy. Sadly for us we were even worse than the Tuesday and never got going. There were mitigating circumstances however. We got stuck with the light bowls (yet again) which don’t knock as many skittles down. When captain Roger scored a rubbish four towards the end we knew the game was up. We eventually finished a disappointing second from bottom. Next year we will make sure we get three decent heavy bowls. Then watch us go!

The first Stodgebuster meal of the season would be prior to the Peacehaven friendly. We all met up at the Stonehouse Pizza and Carvery in Peacehaven before the game. We like it there as help-yourself-to-as-much-as-you-want carvery is, obviously, right up our street. It’s a challenge to see who can get the most roast potatoes on their plate and get back to the table without dropping any. But as the roast spuds didn’t look great PJ passed on them and went for mash instead. Enough to resemble a small mountain actually.

The pre-season training schedule had paid off and all meals were polished off admirably. In the game Lewes carried on in the same vein that saw the defeat of FC United of Manchester the previous Saturday and looked a class apart from Peacehaven, but somehow found themselves a goal down at half time causing one of our group to remark very eloquently “How the *£&! are we losing this? However, Lewes ran amok in the second half knocking in four without reply.

A week later and it was off to East Grinstead. The trouncing of old rivals Eastbourne Borough at the weekend had put us all in a good mood. This time Golden Goal Ethel joined us in PJ’s Rookmobile for the short journey up the A22. We kept a close eye on her as we didn’t want her causing any trouble. In the absence of chips it was bacon rolls all round as we settled down to enjoy the game. Lewes again dominated but only found themselves one up at half time thanks to a nice finish by Dayshonne.

We took the traditional stroll up to the other end at half time ready to see more Lewes goals fly in. Unfortunately, just like our last visit, the flying was being done by thousands of flies and other insects. Even though it had been the hottest day of the year Gary the Badge had taken preventative measure of wearing jeans this time due to ending up in hospital and taking antibiotics after our last visit twelve months earlier. We reckon it was his after shave. They definitely seemed to like Ethel’s hair too, and after five minutes of swatting them away we admitted defeat and retreated to the stand to watch the rest of the game. 

A couple more goals in the second half, and a cracker from the home team, saw Lewes run out three-one winners. Well done to them and also to the hardier souls who remained behind the goal for the full forty five minutes swatting away all the critters.

Saturday again, and it was a train journey for Gary the Badge, Malcolm and Roly to Thames Ditton for an away friendly at the Metropolitan Police. Imber Court is a nice ground to watch football. It has an excellent cafe in the clubhouse which is very handy as there is nowhere else in the area. PJ planned to attend but missed it thanks to a hospital appointment running late by more than a couple of hours. He wasn’t best pleased and had to make do with the Twitter feed instead. He still more than caught up with the calories, though, by having one of The Green Man’s renowned huge dinners later in the day. A much changed line up saw Lewes rip the Met apart in a four-one victory. Five wins out of five, and playing well in every game. One couldn’t ask for much more.

The last away friendly was at Haywards Heath. The Stodgebusters were decimated due to Gary and Roly being in Liverpool visiting the old stamping ground and haunts of some obscure old band called “The Beetles”(?). Malcolm had been to Glorious Goodwood which couldn’t have been that glorious considering the weather had completely changed from hot and sunny to very windy and showery.

It was left to PJ to fly the flag. It was his first visit to Hanbury Park Stadium, and what a nice little stadium it was too, with car parking actually inside the ground. He wasn’t on his own for long as Golden Goal Ethel had made the trip with two of her minders keeping her in line, and Turnstile Alan was back to give the opposition defence some of his own unique brand of encouragement.

It wasn’t the strongest of Lewes line ups. Several players, who one would think would be in the first eleven, weren’t playing but Lewes were well on top in the first half. A lovely cross from Dayshonne was headed in by Jordy Mongoy after only two minutes. Haywards Heath, who had several ex-Rooks including Lloyd Cotton and Nico Cotton in their line up, equalised after dreadful mix up at the back resulted in a desperate lunge and a penalty. The penalty taker was a bit flash and put it in the net Panenka style. We really wished that had gone wrong! Lewes were quickly back in front with a nice Ola Adeyemo finish.

The second half was a different story though. Several changes to the Lewes team throughout the half unsettled things and the home team got well on top. Some more poor defending allowed them to score three times in the last twenty minutes, two of them goalmouth scrambles. It ended four-two to Haywards Heath. Five straight wins came to an abrupt halt.

It has to be remembered that the finishing eleven did seem to be mostly youngsters and triallists, and the starting eleven versus Enfield Town in the first league game will surely be a lot different. But Darren didn’t look happy with that second half.  He was probably a bit happier after the three-one victory at home to Whitehawk the following Saturday though.

The Stodgebusters will return for the big Worthing away clash.

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LEWES FC FIXTURES 2019/20

Sat Aug 10 Enfield Town H
Tue Aug 13 Worthing A
Sat Aug 17 Bowers & Pitsea H
Sat Aug 24 Margate A
Mon Aug 26 Horsham H
Sat Aug 31 Leatherhead A
Sat Sep 7 FA Cup 1st Qual Rd
Wed Sep 11 FA Cup 1st Qual Rd – Replays
Sat Sep 14 Potters Bar Town H
Sat Sep 21 Wingate & Finchley H FA Cup 2nd Qual Rd
Sat Sep 28 Brightlingsea Regent A
Mon Sep 30 Carshalton Athletic A
Sat Oct 5 Haringey Borough H FA Cup 3rd Qual Rd
Sat Oct 12 East Thurrock United A
Sat Oct 19 Cray Wanderers H FA Cup 4th Qual Rd
Wed Oct 23 Corinthian-Casuals H
Sat Oct 26 FA Trophy 1st Qual Rd
Wed Oct 30 FA Trophy 1st Qual Rd – Replays
Sat Nov 2 Cheshunt A
Sat Nov 9 Hornchurch H FA Cup 1/Trophy 2nd Qual Rd
Sat Nov 16 Kingstonian A
Sat Nov 23 Bishops Stortford A FA Trophy 3rd Qual Rd
Sat Nov 30 Folkestone Invicta H FA Cup 2
Sat Dec 7 Leatherhead H
Sat Dec 14 Merstham A FA Trophy 1
Thu Dec 26 Bognor Regis Town H
Wed Jan 1 Horsham A
Sat Jan 4 Haringey Borough A
Sat Jan 11 Carshalton Athletic H FA Trophy 2
Sat Jan 18 Cray Wanderers A
Sat Jan 25 East Thurrock United H
Sat Feb 1 Corinthian-Casuals A
Sat Feb 8 Cheshunt H
Sat Feb 15 Enfield Town A
Wed Feb 19 Worthing H
Sat Feb 22 Brightlingsea Regent H
Sat Feb 29 Wingate & Finchley A
Sat Mar 7 Kingstonian H
Sat Mar 14 Hornchurch A
Sat Mar 21 Bowers & Pitsea A
Sat Mar 28 Merstham H
Sat Apr 4 Potters Bar Town A
Sat Apr 11 Margate H
Mon Apr 13 Bognor Regis Town A
Sat Apr 18 Bishops Stortford H
Sat Apr 25 Folkestone Invicta A

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LIVE UPDATES FROM TODAY’S GAME

The frame below should give you live updates from today’s game, including team line-ups, goals, yellow and red cards. This is an experimental feature, so apologies if it breaks. Data supplied by FootballWebPages.

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DARREN QUIZ ANSWERS

  1. James Hammond, Stacey Freeman, Ronnie Conlon, Steve Brinkhurst, Chris Winterton, Jonte Smith, Charlie Coppola, Lloyd Cotton
  2. Winterton, Wilson, Marsh-Brown, Breach, Freeman, Redwood, Logan, Muggeridge, McCreadie, Ciardini, Laing
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CREDITS AND LEGAL

The BetVictor Isthmian League strongly support recent FA statements that there should be a zero tolerance approach against racism and all forms of discrimination. Accordingly, any form of discriminatory abuse, whether it be based on race or ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, faith, age, ability or any other form of abuse will be reported to The Football Association for action by that Association. (The FA 0800 085 0508/Kick It Out 020 7253 0162)

Lewes 2000 FC Limited. Registered in England and Wales with Company Registration Number 03790979. Lewes 2000 FC Limited is 100% owned by Lewes Community Football Club.

Honorary President Terry Parris
Chairman Stuart Fuller
Directors
Charlie Dobres, Eddie Ramsden, Stuart Fuller, John Peel, Ed Briggs, Jon Ruben, Roger Warner, Galia Orme
Non-executive directors Michelle Bowie Krige, Karen Dobres, Steve Keegan
Club Secretary
Barry Collins
Youth Secretary Kevin Brook
Operations Manager Duncan Thompson

Equality FC Campaign Manager Karen Dobres

Life Members
Mr and Mrs Brook, Vic Blunt, Pat Dartnell, Gary Elphick, Gordon Fowlie, Peter Hiscox, Billy Nixon, Derrick Parris, Terry Parris, Jimmy Quinn, P. Swaysland, Steve Ibbitson, Jason Hopkinson, Steve White, Martin Elliot, Kevin Fingerneissl, Kevin Powell, David and Barbara Arnold, Roger and Cathy Feltham, Ethel Treagus, Roy Dartnell RIP, Ron Moore, Derek Southouse, Ray Smith, Ken Carter RIP


Co-Managers Ross Standen and Tony Coade
Physiotherapists Paul Baskin & Xavier Smith

Under-18s Manager Dale Hurley
Under-18s Assistant Manager Craig Stevens
Under-18s coaches Jake Legrange and Johnny Buggy

Golden Rook Rob Read
Web Editor Stuart Fuller
Progcast Editors Paul Sheppard and Duncan Thompson
Progcast Designer Barry Collins
Club Photographer James Boyes