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Hornchurch boss Stimson is predicting Stortford rivals to be challenging this campaign

PUBLISHED: 12:00 25 September 2020

Lewwis Spence of Hornchurch during Hornchurch vs Dagenham & Redbridge, Friendly Match Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 5th September 2020

Lewwis Spence of Hornchurch during Hornchurch vs Dagenham & Redbridge, Friendly Match Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 5th September 2020

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Hornchurch manager Mark Stimson believes Bishop’s Stortford will be challenging at the top of the Isthmian League this season after their impressive summer signings.

Hornchurch manager Mark Stimson during Hornchurch vs Dagenham & Redbridge, Friendly Match Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 5th September 2020Hornchurch manager Mark Stimson during Hornchurch vs Dagenham & Redbridge, Friendly Match Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 5th September 2020

The Urchins travel to Woodside Park on Saturday for their second league fixture of the new campaign following an impressive opening week with victories in two competitions.

It is then also a trip to Margate on Tuesday in the Isthmian Premier Division as the fixtures come thick and fast due to the delayed start date.

“They seem to be having a go again this year, last year they dropped off a little bit, they weren’t really the Stortford I’ve known over the last few years,” said Stimson.

“In the summer they’ve signed a couple of strikers and a few boys from East Thurrock United, so they look like they’re going to be up there challenging like ourselves.

“We’re expecting another tough one, but if we can continue peforming that’s the most important thing.

“If you keep your performances right I’d say eight or nine times out of 10 you come away with the right result. The performances have been good, so hopefully we can keep that up.”

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Hornchurch sealed a 2-1 win over Merstham in the league on Saturday before progressing into the next round of the FA Cup with a 3-0 victory at Bowers & Pitsea.

“It was perfect to be fair. The first game against Merstham you always want to try getting off to a good start, and we got there in the end,” Stimson added.

“Then to follow that up with a cup win was really important for the club because of finances, so that was good.”

The boss praised captain Lewis Spence’s 89th-minute winner in the league clash and also heaped praise on Ellis Brown for his superb performance in the cup tie.

“It was definitely a goal of the season contender, we had some good half-chances in the first half, their goalkeeper made a good save and we had one blocked on the line,” he said.

“Unfortunately Sam Higgins had to come off, so you’re looking at no Higgins and no Chris Dickson, last season’s top goalscorer, so we were thinking ‘this is going to be a test’.

“The boys rose to that test, we were always in control and we took the lead, but then had a penalty given against us.

“The boys stuck in there and when called upon the captain stood up. The goal was a pleasure to watch and it was a good moment.”

He added: “Ellis has been excellent since he’s been at the club to be fair, but to get the two goals and the assist, he had a tremedous night and he was unplayable.”


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