'Hornchurch face tough Lewes and Folkestone tests,' says Stimson

Liam Nash of Hornchurch scores the third goal for his team and celebrates during Hornchurch vs Walth

Liam Nash of Hornchurch scores the third goal for his team and celebrates during Hornchurch vs Walthamstow, Emirates FA Cup Football at Hornchurch Stadium on September 18, 2021 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

Manager Mark Stimson says Hornchurch FC now face two big "tests" as they hit the road to take on Lewes and Folkestone Invicta. 

The Urchins will head to The Dripping Pan on Saturday to take on second-placed Lewes before then travelling to the BuildKent Stadium on Tuesday to face Folkestone. 

These are two sides that five-time FA Trophy winner Stimson expects to be pushing for the Isthmian Premier Division play-off places this campaign. 

“We’re really going to be tested in the next two games, fingers crossed we can go on those two trips and pick up some points,” Stimson said. 

“Lewes, the manager, left Cray and moved across to Lewes and he took a few of those players, with some of the additions they’ve made this summer of top players. 


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“They’ve got players in from National League South and even League Football, so that will be a test, and then Folkestone Invicta are always up there. 

“They’re always in those play-off positions. For some reason we always get Folkestone on a Tuesday night and it’s not the easiest place to get to.

Lewwis Spence of Hornchurch during Hornchurch vs Walthamstow, Emirates FA Cup Football at Hornchurch

Lewwis Spence of Hornchurch during Hornchurch vs Walthamstow, Emirates FA Cup Football at Hornchurch Stadium on September 18, 2021 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

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“When you play against teams at the top of the division you want to test yourself and I think when we looked at our opening 10 fixtures I put eight of those in the top eight, so it’s a tough start, but all we can do is perform and come back with some points.”

Hornchurch cruised to a 4-1 victory over Essex Senior League side Walthamstow to put them into the third qualifying round of the FA Cup.  

Goals from Sam Higgins, Jili Buyabu, Liam Nash and Charlie Ruff guided Stimson’s Urchins to victory at Bridge Avenue.

Jili Buyabu of Hornchurch scores the second goal for his team and celebrates during Hornchurch vs Wa

Jili Buyabu of Hornchurch scores the second goal for his team and celebrates during Hornchurch vs Walthamstow, Emirates FA Cup Football at Hornchurch Stadium on September 18, 2021 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

“It was a pleasing result, a good performance and we now look forward to the next round when that comes around,” the boss said. 

“Charlie Ruff got a good goal, Sam Higgins put another one on his tally, Liam Nash and young Jili getting a goal. It’s good to spread them around and we could have had a couple more to be honest."

The Urchins have since been drawn away to league rivals Bowers & Pitsea in the third qualifying round tie of the FA Cup. 

“Last year we drew them out twice, so fingers crossed we can get a similar result, but they had a fantastic result on the weekend to go to Bishop’s Stortford and won 2-0. 

Sam Higgins of Hornchurch rises with Moses Carvalho of Walthamstow during Hornchurch vs Walthamstow,

Sam Higgins of Hornchurch rises with Moses Carvalho of Walthamstow during Hornchurch vs Walthamstow, Emirates FA Cup Football at Hornchurch Stadium on September 18, 2021 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

“That just shows you how hard that game will be when it comes around but before that, we’ve got a couple of really tough league games.” 

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