Tuesday 31st May 2005

Merridan pledges his future to promotion chasing Thamesmead

TALENTED Thamesmead Town wing-back Marc Merridan has extended his contract for another year, writes Stephen McCartney.

The 22-year-old former Crystal Palace schoolboy, who has also played for Kent League rivals VCD Athletic, missed the early part of last season but came back to be a valuable member of Paul Blade's side.

Thamesmead manager Paul Blade is delighted the right-sided player has pledged his future at Bayliss Avenue.

"We are looking to rebuild for next season," he said.  "But to do this you have to keep our best players at the club and Mezza is one of those.

"Now he has signed for another year we should be adding to the side in the next couple of weeks, this should show our intentions for promotion for next year."

The Mead have announced Steve O'Boyle has been appointed reserve team manager.

O'Boyle was playing for the reserves last season teams up with former Greenwich Borough manager Dave Ward and former Thamesmead goalkeeper Lee Haywood.

Speaking on the appointment, Blade added: "It's a good appointment for the club.  Steve has been with us for a long time and knows how the club is run.

"Steve is very popular with the reserve team players and with the experience that Dave Ward brings to the club I think they should all make a great team.

"We spoke to them last week and expressed how we wanted the first team and reserves to be as one, which has not been the case over the last year or so and they are in total agreement.

"We are all looking for the club to go in the same direction so it was a fairly easy decision for the club to make."

Meanwhile, Thamesmead Town have announced five pre-season friendlies, with two more in the pipeline.

They start their programme with two home games against Dartford (23rd July) and Bromley (26th July) before they make the trip to Watham Abbey (30th July).  They continue their tough preparation to their Kent League campaign with two home games against Fisher Athletic (2nd August) and Cray Wanderers (6th August).