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Frew just couldn’t turn down ‘Magic’

PUBLISHED: 10:00 19 June 2015

Matt Frew returned to playing for seven of Barkingside's eight matches in the Ryman North last season (pic: Andrew Soul)

Matt Frew returned to playing for seven of Barkingside's eight matches in the Ryman North last season (pic: Andrew Soul)

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Former Barkingside boss had signed for Ryman North rivals Aveley but had a change of heart

Romford manager Paul Martin thanks the fans at the end of the season (pic: TGSPHOTO)Romford manager Paul Martin thanks the fans at the end of the season (pic: TGSPHOTO)

Matt Frew returned to Romford this week after revealing watching players depart Paul Martin’s team pulled at his heartstrings.

The 34-year-old, who managed Barkingside in Ryman North last season, had signed a contract with league rivals Aveley on June 1.

But he changed his mind and decided to make a return to Boro – a club he represented on 21 occasions during the 2004/05 Essex Senior League campaign.

“I signed forms with Aveley on Monday, June 1 and that was that for me,” said Frew.

“What turned it was seeing the players that left Romford because my heartstrings were being pulled then. I saw Abs Seymour went to Aveley and the captain Jack Barry had already left for Thamesmead Town.

“They both deserve their moves because they have been so loyal to ‘Magic’ over the years, but it was seeing them go that just tugged at my heart.

“My heart was saying Romford and my head was saying Aveley and I’m the sort of person to go with my heart.”

That is exactly what Frew did, but it was only after talking with Boro boss Martin that his decision was finally made.

That chat with the Romford manager only occurred after Aveley boss Justin Gardner told Frew to speak to his old friend.

“I need to explain that Justin was fantastic because I told him exactly how I was feeling and he said think about what you want to do and have a chat with ‘Magic’,” added Frew.

“Justin said that me being honest with him was enough and I spoke to ‘Magic’. I went round his house and, to be honest, it was like old times.

“As soon as I started talking to him my mind was made up. We speak on the phone, but we haven’t seen each other as much with me managing and everything else so it is good to know I am going back to where it all started for me and probably where it will all end now too.”

Frew was quick to refute suggestions he had decided to rejoin Romford because Martin revealed the 34-year-old could eventually replace him as boss.

The defender is only interested in playing and doesn’t see his switch to Ship Lane as the first step towards managing the club in the future.

“What Paul told the Recorder hasn’t swayed my decision because people are probably thinking that,” Frew said.

“We spoke about me being a player and that was it. Don’t get me wrong, he has said to me before that he does view me as his replacement as Romford manager eventually, but that hasn’t even entered my mind when making this decision.

“I wish Aveley all the best and Justin because he was fantastic. He knows my reasons and was very supportive of my decision and I’m grateful for that.

“It’s good to finally have it sorted now and I can’t wait to give everything for Romford.”


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