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The AFC Hornchurch blog

PUBLISHED: 17:05 28 November 2018 | UPDATED: 17:05 28 November 2018

AFC Hornchurch manager Jim McFarlane (L) speaks to Joey May - East Thurrock United vs AFC Hornchurch - Ryman League Premier Division Football at Rookery Hill - 25/01/14 - MANDATORY CREDIT: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO - Self billing applies where appropriate - 0845 094 6026 - contact@tgsphoto.co.uk - NO UNPAID USE

AFC Hornchurch manager Jim McFarlane (L) speaks to Joey May - East Thurrock United vs AFC Hornchurch - Ryman League Premier Division Football at Rookery Hill - 25/01/14 - MANDATORY CREDIT: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO - Self billing applies where appropriate - 0845 094 6026 - contact@tgsphoto.co.uk - NO UNPAID USE

Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football League images are subject to DataCo Licencing restrictions

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There has been plenty written about Black Friday, but for Hornchurch it was more of a Black Weekend, starting with the trip to Haringey Borough, where they got off to the worst possible start by conceding a goal in the second minute, from a poorly defended corner.

The second goal came from another corner, when the scorer was left with far too much space to direct his header into the net.

Our defence was opened up again a couple of minutes from time, and although Sean Marks pulled back a consolation goal a minute later, it was far too late to turn the match around.

There is supposed to be only one shade of black, but black became even blacker on Sunday, with the news that our manager, Jim McFarlane, had resigned.

When Colin McBride became manager at Hornchurch in the summer of 2006 he brought with him a number of Thurrock players, including Jim McFarlane.

Jim had a very impressive playing record at Purfleet (who later changed their name to Thurrock). After a trial at Leyton Orient, he played for Millwall Wanderers, Fisher Athletic and Clapton, before joining Purfleet in August 1991.

After five seasons at Purfleet, he joined Concord Rangers in August 1996, but returned to Purfleet for the 1997-98 season.

In his two spells at Purfleet he scored 75 goals in 634 appearances, and he followed Colin McBride to Hornchurch in the summer of 2006.

Jim missed the first match under Colin McBride’s Hornchurch due to injury, but he made his debut the following Tuesday against Great Wakering, the result being a 5-0 win for Hornchurch.

McFarlane made 107 appearances as a player over three seasons, his last game being at Sutton in April 2009.

He would almost certainly have played more games, but in the opening match of 2007 he broke his leg, although he tried to play on for a time.

Normally a broken leg would keep you out for twelve months or more, but Jim made an incredible recovery, and was playing again by December of the same year, just three and a half months later.

Jim’s last match as a player was at Sutton Utd on April, 25, 2009, and the following season he became assistant manager to Colin McBride, a position he held for 73 matches, until Colin was forced to step aside to concentrate on financial matters at Hornchurch.

Jim’s first match as manager was on September, 26, 2009 at Margate.

In February 2018 he suffered a stroke and Colin McBride took over as manager for the remainder of the season.

Jim again made an incredible recovery and was back in charge in time for the start of the current season.

In total Jim was manager for 502 matches, and his involvement with Hornchurch as player, assistant manager and manager has amounted to 682 matches in total.

Colin McBride took charge of the match against Chipstead, and two early goals set the scene for what turned out to be a comfortable 3-0 win, although the score could easily have been higher, as we hit the post on three occasions.

For our match against Chipstead we again issued two different programmes, an eight page ‘traditional’ paper programme that was given away free on entry into the ground, and a much larger 34-page digital, downloadable programme, accessible via our official web site.

With an anticipated small attendance for the league cup match, it did not make financial sense to produce our usual programme in hard-copy format, and although we have no intention of going ‘digital only’ it is something we need to consider for our midweek matches, which invariably clash with a Big Match on the television, the the consequent lower attendance.

We now travel to Whitehawk on Saturday, and are at home on Tuesday in the Essex Senior Cup against Great Wakering.

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