I have no plans to stop now and I have enough to be playing at this level for a couple more years yet, says Folkestone Invicta attacker Ian Draycott
FOLKESTONE INVICTA manager Neil Cugley paid tribute to attacker Ian Draycott ahead of his testimonial match tomorrow.
The 34-year-old is the all-time record goalscorer for Folkestone Invicta and he plays against a former club Maidstone United at Cheriton Road (15:00).
Draycott broke Jimmy Dryden’s goalscoring record with his 142nd goal for the club, a penalty in a 3-3 draw against Potters Bar Town last September.
Draycott has since moved on to 146 goals from 313 appearances (252 starting and 61 as a substitute), and has been rewarded with a testimonial against newly-promoted side Maidstone United.
“We hope he and his family have an enjoyable day and would like to thank everybody from Maidstone United, one of Ian’s former clubs, for agreeing to play the game, and also congratulate them on their magnificent achievement of winning the Vanarama National League South title last season and so earning promotion to the National League,” said a club statement from the Isthmian League Premier Division club.
Draycott told the club website how Cugley enticed him from Leatherhead to sign for the club back in the summer of 2014.
“One of his sales tactics when trying to sign me was to mention that testimonials happen slightly earlier at Folkestone,” said Draycott.
“It is something he said to me the first time we spoke and what that said to me was that there are people who stay at the club that long and that’s a credit to Cugs and the club.
“When players want to stay around for that period of time, it must be a nice club. It is everything about the club, it is very welcoming, very friendly, you can see the development of the club and the progress.
“Looking around the ground you can see it’s a club that is going in the right direction. Most importantly, it’s a manager that I think understands non-league, understands that people have other things outside of football going on, whether that be work or family life.
“I have never known a manager to be so understanding. In training, everyone wants to be there. Everyone wants to be at the club because Cugs has got that understanding.”
Draycott insists he has no intentions to hang up the boots and wants to help Cugley’s men claim promotion at the end of the season.
“I have no plans to stop now. I think I have enough to be playing at this level for a couple more years yet. You take every season as it comes but I have really enjoyed my football and just want to be playing,” added Draycott.
“When I first signed for the club, it was number one to get out of the league, the Isthmian South. We achieved that within the second season convincingly. We stabilised in the Premier and now we want to get back competing near the top.
“We have already enjoyed getting into the play-offs without getting over the line, now it is about time we really pushed on and look to get promoted.”
Cugley, meanwhile, paid tribute to the model pro.
“Dracys is a proven goalscorer and now he’s got a bit older he has taken to playing a bit deeper, but he can still definitely do a job for us and I’m delighted that he is having this well-earned testimonial.
“He’s been a good pro ever since he signed for the club and all the players enjoy playing with him and although he is quiet off the pitch, he is a good talker on it which is invaluable.
“I hope he enjoys his day and that the supporters turn out in numbers to reward someone who has been a god servant to the club over the years.”
The club has confirmed that admission prices will be £8 (adults), £5 (concessions) and £3 (under 18s).
Visit Folkestone Invicta’s website: www.folkestoneinvictafc.co.uk