We know the game against Johnson & Phillips will be tough, so although we’re here to win, we must also enjoy the night, says Parkwood Rangers manager Doug Scott
PARKWOOD RANGERS manager Doug Scott says he wants his team to enjoy their maiden cup final.
The Bexley-based outfit lock horns with Kidbrooke-based side Johnson & Phillips in the Barry Bundock West Kent Challenge Shield at Greatness Park in Sevenoaks on Tuesday night.
Johnson & Phillips completed their Andreas Carter Kent County League Division Two West campaign in ninth-place (bottom four), having won five and drawn six of their 22 league outings.
Parkwood Rangers, meanwhile, go into the game as underdogs as they compete in Division Three West and they completed their campaign by finishing at the summit with 17 wins and five draws from their 22 games but they will have to settle for a runners-up place if Tudor Sports Reserves claim at least a point at home to Peckham Town Reserves this coming Saturday.
“To reach this cup final and guarantee automatic promotion, still with a very slim chance of being champions, is a fantastic achievement for this team and everyone associated with Parkwood Rangers,” said Scott.
“Like most teams, injuries and players’ working have really made it difficult at times, especially earlier in the season but all the boys’ hard work has made it worthwhile, especially considering the high standard, as always in the Third Division and the fact that we have missed out on promotion by one place now four times.
“What’s especially pleasing is, as a club which is the proud recipient of the FA’s Standard Charter Community award, we now have well over 300 players playing for Parkwood, so from seven little lads attending the same school and kicking a ball about at the Golden Acre in Bexley and with two footballing dads, Jim Maietta and Neil Smith dedicating time, we have continued to evolve as a club with a fantastic group of volunteers and now ladies/girls/minis/vets/futsal teams and so many community projects on the go.
“We are extremely proud of our achievement to give our local community a club that welcomes all age groups and ability, genders and backgrounds etc, even if sometimes it means we can’t compete at the highest of levels.
“After being involved with Parkwood Rangers for 19 years, my first team still has nine players that have played for Parkwood since the age of four or played 90% of their football at Parkwood, which is something the club is very proud of.
“This year we are now in the advanced stages of securing 90% of the funds, via The London FA, for a new 3G pitch with lights and a stand.
“With the continued support of the league, Bexley Sports & Social Club and those brilliant volunteers, led by Gavin Davies, our club secretary and Roberto Salvati, our chairman and my assistant manager, we hope we can continue to grow, offering everyone a fun and safe place to develop both footballing and social skills, plus making many friends in the process.
“As for the cup run to the final, we have played and beaten some very competitive teams in Crayford Arrows, Equinoccial, Dulwich Village and Greenways and we know the game against Johnson & Phillips will be tough, so although we’re here to win, we must also enjoy the night.
“I sincerely hope that everyone watching enjoys the night and a special mention to Cyril Windiate, who will be stepping down as chairman of the Kent County League.
“Cyril is a special person to give so much time to others and all at Parkwood Rangers wish Cyril well, although expect Cyril will not completely retire as football is everything!
Parkwood Rangers v Johnson & Phillips
Barry Bundock West Kent Challenge Shield Final
Tuesday 7 May 2019
Kick Off 7:30pm
at Greatness Park, Mill Lane, Seal Road, Sevenoaks, Kent TN14 5BX