McFarlane’s delight as Holloway signs for Urchins

Hornchurch boss captures new defender

SAM HOLLOWAY will go straight into AFC Hornchurch’s squad for their FA Trophy tie with Ashford Town (Middx) at the weekend and boss Jimmy McFarlane hopes his new acquisition will add much needed power and height to his backline, writes Colin Munford.

Holloway makes the switch to Bridge Avenue from Conference South side Braintree Town, after enjoying two-and-a-half successful seasons at Aveley alongside boss Rod Stringer, and was one of eight players the former Barking boss took with him to Braintree when he was appointed in the summer.

But the left back (pictured left) has failed to bed down a regular spot at Cressing Road this season, with the Irons currently top of the table, and after a spell on loan at league rivals Billericay Town earlier in the season, has opted to join the Urchins on a permanent basis in the hope of pinning down a regular first team place.

And McFarlane believes with the former Redbridge youngster coming into a team on top form, which sees them on an 11 game unbeaten run going into the FA Trophy first round tie on Saturday, will only benefit the 22-year-old.

“This league requires big powerful athletes at the back,” he said.

“Sam falls into that category. He’s a player I always admired when he was with Rod (Stringer) at Aveley and I was keen to bring him in.

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“He was a regular and was one of many reasons why they did so well towards the end of the season.

“Rod continued to develop him and he has improved year on year.”

But McFarlane has warned his new signing that if he expects to get into the starting 11 straight away, then he’ll be badly mistaken.

“Everyone at the club has got to fight for their position in the starting 11,” said the Hornchurch chief.

“No-one is guaranteed a start and those that currently start have the shirt and until anyone proves otherwise it’ll be the way things stay.

“The good thing is that when Billericay played in the Trophy, he didn’t play because Braintree did not want him cup tied, because of their involvement in the competition, so he is ready and available if I decide to call upon him.”