FC Elmstead appoint Ennio Gonnella to slowly build a team to take them to the next level

Monday 18th February 2019

FC ELMSTEAD unveiled Ennio Gonnella as their new manager yesterday.


Gonnella stepped down from his managerial role at Southern Counties East Football League First Division rivals Kent Football United in November after three years at the Dartford-based club.

FC Elmstead parted company with manager Marc Bentz last month, with his last game in charge being their 2-0 home defeat to Sheppey United in the Challenge Cup Third Round on 8 January.

Bentz took over from Fabio Rossi to manage the side in September 2017 and he guided the homeless club to a top-eight finish in the league last season.

He was in charge for 60 games in all competitions and celebrated 23 wins, drew 12 of them and suffered 25 defeats during his tenure.

General manager Rossi took charge of FC Elmstead’s next two games, a 6-1 thrashing at Tooting Bec in the London Senior Trophy and a 2-2 home draw in the league against Phoenix Sports Reserves at the weekend.

“We are pleased to announce Ennio Gonnella as our first team manager,” said a club statement.

“Our thanks to the other applicant who took the time to apply.

“Ennio has experience at this level as well as an extensive knowledge of players.  We hope Ennio will add a few to our current squad.

“The short-term aim is to restore confidence to the squad.  The long-term aim is slowly build a team that can take us to the next level.”

FC Elmstead sit in fourteenth-place (bottom five) in the Southern Counties East Football League First Division and have collected five wins and five draws from their 19 games.

The club have six games in hand over three clubs and have played the fewest number of league games in the 18-club division.

FC Elmstead are five points clear of the side at the bottom of the table, Rochester United.

Gonnella’s first game in charge is next Saturday, 23 February, when eleventh-placed Lewisham Borough visit Lower Road, Hextable (15:00).