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Hornchurch boss Stimson is excited for Saunders return

PUBLISHED: 08:00 04 September 2020

George Saunders of Hornchurch and Salvyn Kisitu of Haringey during Hornchurch vs Haringey Borough, BetVictor League Premier Division Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 29th February 2020

George Saunders of Hornchurch and Salvyn Kisitu of Haringey during Hornchurch vs Haringey Borough, BetVictor League Premier Division Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 29th February 2020

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Hornchurch manager Mark Stimson is looking forward to welcoming former winger George Saunders and his new side Dagenham & Redbridge to Bridge Avenue this weekend.

Mark Stimson manager of Hornchurch during Hornchurch vs Bishop's Stortford, BetVictor League Premier Division Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 28th September 2019Mark Stimson manager of Hornchurch during Hornchurch vs Bishop's Stortford, BetVictor League Premier Division Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 28th September 2019

The Urchins host the National League outfit on Saturday (3pm) as they continue their preparations for the upcoming Isthmian League Premier Division season.

The boss knows it will be another good test for his squad but he does hope Saunders doesn’t cause too much damage.

“Dagenham are an established National League side, so that will be another tough test for us. They train full-time, just like Ebbsfleet, and that makes a difference especially in the last 20 minutes of a game,” Stimson said.

“We’re looking forward to it. George has only just recently left, but it will be great to see him. I spoke to him recently and he’s enjoying himself massively at Dagenham at the moment.

“Like I said when it happened, they’ve got one hell of a football player, who has got the ability and athleticism to go really high up the level, and also a really good lad as well.

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“We look forward to seeing him and hopefully he doesn’t do too much damage on Saturday.”

Hornchurch will also be hoping to pull in a bigger crowd for the contest with it being between two local sides.

“I think last night (against Ebbsfleet) we must have had about 300. Saturday we’ve got Dagenham, being a local game and with George as well I’m sure there will be a few coming over.

“We’ve also then got Maidstone on Tuesday evening.”

Stimson’s men played out a 0-0 draw with National League South side Ebbsfleet United on Tuesday at Bridge Avenue in a high intensity clash.

“Pre-season games, I’m not a lover of them, but you have to do them and firstly thanks to Ebbsfleet for coming down as they’re a higher-up club and they had to get across that bridge on a Tuesday night. That can be difficult,” added Stimson.

“It was a really good game, high tempo, and we got loads from it, especially fitness-wise as we had to chase around and work hard then with the ball. We played some good stuff so overall it was a pleasing evening’s work.”

Hornchurch host Merstham in their first game of the new league season on September 19 then travel to Bishop’s Stortford (Sept 26) and Margate (Sept 29) before returning to Bridge Avenue to entertain Haringey (October 3).


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