The decision to leave full-time football was a tough one but I believe it was the right one for my future, says former Bromley midfielder Lee Minshull
LEE MINSHULL has explained his reasons for leaving Bromley after playing two seasons in the Vanarama National League for the club.
The 31-year-old central midfielder dropped a bombshell when he left Hayes Lane to sign for part-time Bostik Premier side Leatherhead, who are now managed by Minshull’s former AFC Wimbledon team mate Sammy Moore.
Bromley midfielder Lee Minshull collects the man-of-the-match award after Bromley's 2-0 win over Maidstone United in the Vanarama National League on 3 December 2016.
Photo: Bromley FC
Bromley completed their debut National League campaign in a respectable fourteenth-place in the table on 60 points, but last season Neil Smith guided the Ravens to a personal best tenth-place finish on 62 points.
Reflecting on his time at Hayes Lane, Minshull, who arrived at the club from League Two side Newport County, said: “I think as a whole it was a good period for the club, firstly to comfortably stay up and then to improve on that in our second season.
“I was happy to be a part of the transition from part-time to full-time and helped the club as much as I could with my experiences of full-time football and I’m sure they will be looking to improve again both on and off the pitch.”
Minshull, who lives in Chelmsford, Essex, has dropped back into part-time football for Leatherhead and has secured a job as an assistant commercial manager at a global construction services company at Aldgate.
“The main reason (to leave Bromley) was a job opportunity that I felt was too good to turn down,” revealed Minshull.
“Obviously, the decision to leave full-time football was a tough one but I believe it was the right one for my future.
“I really enjoyed the last couple of months of the season, which made the decision even harder, especially with all the positive news coming out of the club, but I’m looking forward to a new challenge with the job and playing part-time with Leatherhead.
“I signed for Leatherhead as it looks to work best around my work commitments. I had to weigh up the travelling, training commitments etc and play a level that I could fully commit to.
“Sammy Moore is someone I know really well and the move into management is something he has always looked forward to. Some people might say he has done it too early as he is probably still one of the best midfielders around in non-league but it’s a great opportunity for him. He’s made some good signings and we are hopeful of a positive season.
“It seems a long time since I last played part-time and dropping to this league feels as though I’ve come full circle from my time at Tonbridge and Ramsgate with a lot of good experiences along the way.
“It’s something I’m excited about though. I’m a better player now after playing in some successful teams with good managers and also physically I’m looking to play for a number of further years while also concentrating on my career away from football.”
Bromley boss Smith, meanwhile, has added a new striker to his squad today after losing Bradley Goldberg (Welling United), Tobi Sho-Silva (Dover Athletic) and last season’s top scorer with 15 goals, Blair Turgott, who has grabbed a deal with League Two side Stevenage following a successful trial at Jamie Vardy’s Academy.
Smith has signed striker Brett Williams, 29, who spent last season at their Vanarama National League rivals Torquay United, where his 11 goals helped the Plainmoor outfit to steer clear of the drop zone.
Williams’ most prolific spell came during his two years at Aldershot Town, where he scored almost 40 goals for the Shots before joining League Two side Stevenage.
Williams then spent time on loan at Forest Green Rovers and scored the winning goal in the play-off semi-final first leg away win at Dover Athletic. He went on to start the National League Promotion Final in May 2016 against Grimsby Town at Wembley Stadium.
Smith told www.bromleyfc.tv: “I’m absolutely delighted to finally confirm Brett’s arrival. He’s a great player who has come in with a great attitude and everybody I’ve spoken to about him gave me glowing reports so I’m expecting him to come in raring to go.”
Williams added: “I’m very happy to be here. It’s a club going forward in the right direction and I was surprised to see the scale of what is happening, it’s very impressive and ticks all the boxes for me.
“I think myself and Bromley FC will do well for each other. I want to get back to 20 plus goals a season. I’ve seen the squad that has been built. I know a few of the team from playing with or against them and I’m really excited to get going.”
Visit Bromley’s website: www.bromleyfc.tv