New-boy Joe Francis hopes he can help fire Felixstowe & Walton United to next level

New Felixstowe & Walton signing, Joe Francis shoots towards goal in the second half of the Leiston v

New Felixstowe & Walton signing, Joe Francis shoots towards goal in the second half of the Leiston v Bromley (FA Trophy 1st round replay) match at Victory Road last season. - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

New Felixstowe & Walton signing Joe Francis says he wants to help the Dellwood Avenue club, ‘get to where they belong’.

Francis, 30, signed for the Seasiders last night as the Thurlow Nunn Premier side beat a plethora of other clubs to his signature.

It’s a big coup for Kevin O’Donnell and Ian Watson, the Seasiders’ management, as there is little doubt Francis will bring much to the club’s hopes of promotion to the Ryman League – Felixstowe finished runners-up to Mildenhall last season, just missing out.

“As soon as it was known I was leaving Leiston, my phone has been busy, I must be honest,” Francis said.

“I really enjoyed my time at Leiston and have nothing but good things to say about Glenn Driver, Tony Kinsella and chairman Andy Crisp. It’s a great club. But after 12 years of doing so much travelling playing non-league, I want to do less.

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“But I still want to win and I still want to be with a competitive club. Felixstowe, with their awesome new facilities tick the boxes.

“They sold the club to me and I want to help them get to where they belong and get them Ryman football. Hopefully my experience will help.”

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Francis has enjoyed successful spells at King’s Lynn, Corby, Lowestoft and more recently Leiston. A flying left midfielder/winger, he is also looking forward to being able to enjoy more family time – especially with newly-born Thomas now part of the Francis family.

“I already have a beautiful son Harrison, who is seven,” Francis said.

“He plays football on Saturday mornings for Inspire, and I hardly ever get a chance to see him play because of my football commitments.

“My wife Kiri has just given birth to little Thomas, both are doing well. My family are important and I want more family time, I want them all to be able to come and watch me play at Felixstowe.

“I also a self-employed plaster, my business is going really well now, another reason I need to do a bit less travelling.”

Francis’ experience will be a huge asset in a Thurlow Nunn League he knows has plenty of good players.

“There are alot of good players in that division, I know that,” Francis said.

“I’m really looking forward to the season ahead.”

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