Mother's pride is FA Vase secret weapon

By Patrick LowmanA MOTHER'S pride will be a key factor in AFC Sudbury's armoury when they run out at Upton Park against Brigg Town in the FA Vase Final.

By Patrick Lowman

A MOTHER'S pride will be a key factor in AFC Sudbury's armoury when they run out at Upton Park against Brigg Town in the FA Vase Final.

One of loudest voices heard from the stands tomorrow is certain to be that of Sally Claydon, who follows her son, star AFC Sudbury striker Andy Claydon, all over the country whenever he plays.

When Andy scored two semi-final goals against local rivals Maldon Town to send AFC Sudbury into the final, the loudest cheer came from his mother.

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She said: “Like any mother would be, I am really, really proud of Andy and it was brilliant to see him score two goals in the semi-final.”

Ever since Andy joined AFC Sudbury from Newmarket Town four years ago, Mrs Claydon has become one of the most familiar faces at the side's King's Marsh Stadium.

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Every time AFC Sudbury play at home, she makes a 40-mile round trip from her home in Dullingham, near Newmarket, to cheer on the team.

This season Mrs Claydon has travelled all over the country watching the team as they try to end the season with an historic treble.

AFC Sudbury have already sealed the Jewson League championship and the Suffolk Premier Cup – and now hope to complete the treble with a victory in the FA Vase Final at West Ham United's ground.

Mrs Claydon said: “It has been a fantastic season this year and it has been very pleasing to see Andy playing so well.

“I have been all over the country watching the team and even travelled up to Yorkshire for one FA Vase game.

“Although I am proud of Andy, I don't like calling him the star of the team because there are 10 other players and they have all been stars this season. I don't think it is possible to say one is better than the other.”

Before Andy joined AFC Sudbury, his mother also followed his progress through youth football and regularly watched him play for Newmarket Town.

Mrs Claydon is now keeping her fingers crossed her son can maintain his good form and produce the goods in the final.

“I am superstitious and don't like to tempt fate, but I hope Andy can bag a hat-trick,” she said.

n See tomorrow's East Anglian Daily Times for the best previews to AFC Sudbury's big day and Monday's EADT for a full match report and reaction.

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