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Kings of Anglia Issue 9 Magazine Offer

The days of the journeyman non-league player will come to an end soon – AFC Sudbury boss Mark Morsley

PUBLISHED: 12:44 01 November 2018 | UPDATED: 16:20 02 November 2018

AFC Sudbury boss Mark Morsley Photo: ANDY ABBOTT

AFC Sudbury boss Mark Morsley Photo: ANDY ABBOTT


AFC Sudbury boss Mark Morsley says other non-league club chairmen will be looking at the Sudbury ‘model’ and hoping it is a big success.

AFC Sudbury's Joe Whight in action for his team. Picture: PAUL VOLLERAFC Sudbury's Joe Whight in action for his team. Picture: PAUL VOLLER

The Bostik North side have invested much in their youth structure in recent years and now have a plethora of teenagers playing first-team football at Step 4.

And while Morsley acknowledges young players can be inconsistent, he feels it is the right way for many non-league clubs to go.

“I think the days of the journeyman player will begin to come to an end in the coming years,” he said.

“The days of a player texting six or seven clubs to get the best deal won’t be around much longer.

“Young players are the future and at Sudbury we are blessed with them.

“Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been a benefactor in the past of having plenty of money to spend on players, so I’m not saying it’s wrong. What I am saying is that many non-league clubs just can’t afford to keep funding that ideal.

“You either need huge benefactors, or be generating huge incomes not to worry about young players, but if you are not, then clubs will need to think their strategy.

“And I would think plenty of club chairmen are looking at what we are doing and hope it is successful with players coming through from our U18s and reserves.”

Sudbury (15th) travel to Great Wakering (12th) on Saturday for a Bostik North clash in what has been a mixed bag of results for Morsley’s side in recent weeks – something he accepts.

“We beat Maldon 4-0 and were excellent, were unlucky to lose to Coggeshall 0-1, although we didn’t test their keeper enough and were lucky to get a point against Barking,” he said.

“That’s what you sometimes get with young players, inconsistency. But it’s a work in progress. It’s just that everyone wants everything done yesteryear.

“But our gates are up, our team is exciting and Sudbury is a great place to be right now.”

AFC Sudbury’s U18s lost 2-1 to Cambridge United in the FA Youth Cup first round on Wednesday night after a fine Cup run, while the first team will look to build on their good away form at Wakering on Saturday.

“We haven’t won at home in the league yet which is frustrating and we play better counter-attacking football away from home,” Morsley added.

“It’s tough to play that way at home.

“Although ironically, we have had some great cup results at home – some really great performances.”

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Teenager Jack Lankester hopes to be involved with the Ipswich Town first team for the remainder of the season but would be prepared to spend time out on loan if it aides his development.

Ipswich Town boss Paul Lambert has been impressing the players with his skills on the training pitch. STUART WATSON looks back on his playing career.

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