Urchins boss McFarlane targeting top-five finish

PUBLISHED: 08:31 26 July 2011

Hornchurch played Maldon in a pre-season friendly

Hornchurch played Maldon in a pre-season friendly


McFarlane will question himself if they fail to make play-offs

Jimmy McFarlane insists he will subject himself to serious self-analysis if he fails to lead Hornchurch to a top-five finish next season.

The Urchins boss believes his side hugely under-achieved by finishing 10th in the Ryman Premier League last term.

They collected eight points more than the previous season – but dropped one place in the table.

And the manager is demanding so much more from his troops – and himself – in the forthcoming campaign.

McFarlane said: “I was bitterly disappointed with last year’s finish given the squad we had.

“We picked up 69 points and the year before that would have seen us into the play-offs.

“But it’s not about the points, it’s where you finish in the table and 10th wasn’t good enough.

“This season our target has to be the play-offs and that’s the absolute minimum I will accept.

“We don’t have the biggest of budgets and we have to work hard for the money we do spend.

“But if we don’t finish with at least a play-off place I’ll have to sit back and take a good, hard look at myself.”

Hornchurch kicked off their pre-season friendly campaign with a 2-0 win at Maldon & Tiptree last Saturday.

Joe Flack and Aaron Gayle scored the second-half goals against the Ryman Division One North side.

And McFarlane was delighted with how things progressed.

He said: “I was really pleased with how the game went, both in terms of the way we played and our general fitness.

“I named a different team for each half – last season’s side for one and one based around trialists for another.

“I had a whole team of trialists, but I’ve whittled those down to four or five players and I’ll take my final look at those in our next pre-season friendly at Grays on Wednesday.”

One trialist who caught the eye of fans in last weekend’s game was young Spanish midfielder Riba.

And McFarlane said: “He’s a central midfielder and has shown some nice touches, but we’ll have to wait and see.

“Some of the continental players look good when they get lots of time on the ball, but English non-league football is something else.”


Latest Romford Sports News


Steve Smith and Mitch Marsh’s triple-century stand piled on the Perth misery to leave England on the brink of losing the Ashes.


Romford-based Judd Trump believes Stephen Maguire lost his head during their quarter-final match at the Dafabet Scottish Open on Friday night.


Gunners legend Bob Wilson has hailed the work of The Arsenal Foundation in an interview with the Islington Gazette ahead of the annual tradition where players and staff – including boss Arsene Wenger – contribute a day’s wages to the cause.

Yesterday, 18:30

West Ham have taken the first small step in their battle to drag themselves away from the bottom of the Premier League, according to manager David Moyes.

Yesterday, 17:00

Romford manager Paul Martin is not panicking about his side’s position but will continue to keep building on his squad during the festive period.

Yesterday, 16:00

Daggers suffered shock first-round loss against Worthing last season and will want to avoid a similar result at Bulls

Yesterday, 15:00

Hornchurch will be looking to continue pulling away at the top of the Bostik North table as they face strugglers Cheshunt this weekend.

Yesterday, 14:00

St Mary’s Lane club play final game of calendar year this weekend

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read sport

Show Job Lists

News from your area


Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now