Brantham capable of lifting title - Hall
BRANTHAM Athletic manager Tony Hall has seen revolutionary changes at the club over the last two years.Just starting his third campaign with last season's Metaltec SIL champions, Hall said: “Brantham have gone from a village side to a semi-professional one in virtually no time at all.
BRANTHAM Athletic manager Tony Hall has seen revolutionary changes at the club over the last two years.
Just starting his third campaign with last season's Metaltec SIL champions, Hall said: “Brantham have gone from a village side to a semi-professional one in virtually no time at all.
“I will not be happy unless we end the season top of the First Division of the Ridgeons League - and it is feasible. Around a third of my team is fresh from last season, and it takes time to gel. They need to settle.
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“There is plenty more to come, but three wins from our first five league matches is a perfectly effective start to life at a new level. It has proved a big jump for some of the younger players but they have coped well.”
Brantham are at home to Stowmarket Town tomorrow with a new stand - purchased from Layer Road - in use for the first time.
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Turnstiles have been installed and there will be no curled-up sandwiches for players (and supporters if the wish to pay) after the match, with a restaurant having been put in place to serve hot meals.
“We have some exceptional people working at the club and it has been transformed,” added Hall.
“I know Stowmarket's Louis Newman well and he is a good manager. They have not had the start he would have liked but he will make sure his team make it very tough for us tomorrow.”
Since pipping three other clubs for the SIL title in a dramatic final day of last season, Hall has brought in a number of experienced performers including Michael Brothers (from Hornchurch), Darren Bethell (AFC Sudbury), Simon Head (AFC Sudbury), Simon Mann (Little Oakley) and Aaron Skeggs (Stanway).
Also in the Ridgeons League First Division, Hadleigh United travel into the heart of the Fens for a tricky fixture at high-flying March Town.
Manager Steve Jay has a full squad available. Support for the Brettsiders has been excellent this season and a coach will depart Millfield for March at 11am.
Ipswich Wanderers are at home in the league to former Wembley winners Diss Town on a day when the 2008/09 FA Vase gets underway with the first qualifying round. Debenham Leisure Centre are at home to fellow Ridgeons side Fakenham while Leiston, who now have former Stockport striker Tesfaye Bramble on their books, are at home to Lincolnshire side Bourne Town.
Under the management of Carl Chenery, Leiston have the potential to go all the way to the final.