Long signs for Fleet - Saturday's pre-season round-up (last updated 13:10)

Monday 24th July 2006

We bring you the news coming from Saturday’s games.

Please send us your match reports - click on CONTACT US - and we shall publish them.

Gravesend & Northfleet, who welcome Milton Keynes Dons to Stonebridge Road on Wednesday night, won their first pre-season friendly on Saturday, with a 2-0 win at Nationwide Conference South outfit Eastbourne Borough.

Goals were scored from Jon Keeling (42 minutes) and Mark DeBola (58) in a very good performance from the Nationwide Conference side.

Trialist Stacy Long, 21, formerly of Charlton Athletic and Notts County, has agreed terms with the club, with ex-Grays Athltic striker DeBola, 23,  set to follow.

Meanwhile, Lee Carey, who played for Ryman Leaguers Tonbridge Angels last season, whilst on loan/work experience from Brighton & Hove Albion is currently on trial at the Fleet, coming on as a second half substitute.

Liam Daish’s side began their pre-season campaign with defeats at Folkestone Invicta (3-1) and Dover Athletic (3-2).

Honours were even at Reachfields Stadium when defender Kevin Watson rescued Folkestone Invicta with a 70th minute equaliser after Lee Winfield had given Kent League side Hythe Town the lead early in the second half.

Winfield opened the scoring for Hythe after 53 minutes when he rifled home a shot from the left hand side but Watson levelled when he hooked the ball into the net after a corner from French trialist Amadou Pame was headed back out.

With Hythe containing many local players with connections to Invicta, this is always one of the more competitive friendlies of the summer for Neil Cugley’s side and this was an often heated affair which saw bookings for Hythe’s Jason Brazier and Damien Abel and Folkestone’s Mark Saunders and Walid Matata.

Another French trialist, Simo Kayo Bertin played his second game for Folkestone, having impressed during his second half showing in the midweek 1-1 draw at Ashford Town.

Margate fans raised £86.09 for Cancer Research “Race for Life” during their side’s impressive 5-2 win over Nationwide Conference South new boys Fisher Athletic at Hartsdown Park.

One of the Gate supporters ran the Race for Life last Sunday in the sweltering heat and has so far raised over £130 with money still to be collected.

On the pitch, Margate featured two new faces, goalkeeper Paul Nichols and Pat Sappleton at centre back.

Nichols, who was at Heybridge Swifts last season, is a friend of England and Chelsea star John Terry.

Ramsgate lost their first pre-season game, going down 1-0 to Sittingbourne at Southwood Stadium.

Steve Lovell’s side had missed a penalty late in the first half when Jon Neal saw his right-footed penalty well held by Rams’ goalkeeper Jurgen Wild, but trialist Dan Bonneywell scored the decisive goal three minutes from time.

who last week were told that their return home has been delayed, shared six-goals at Kent League side Whitstable Town.

Brendon Cass, Brad Potter and James Carter, whose coming back from a lengthy injury, scored the goals for Tony Burman’s side.

Ashford Town,
who travel to Tonbridge Angels on Tuesday night, lost 2-0 to Southern Premier League side Windsor & Eton at the Homelands.

First half goals from Michael Chennels and a Ricky Dolan penalty gave the Royalists the victory, despite arriving to the ground later then planned.

Goals from John Richardson, Chris Gould, Liam Baker, Luke Shand, Darren Willis and Jason Long gave Rye United a comfortable 6-1 victory at Lydd Town on Saturday.

Rye, who were without Aiden Pursglove and Terry McCann, opened their pre-season programme with a 2-0 win at Lewisham Borough in midweek.

The Sussex County League side have now scored eight goals in two games - with eight different players hitting the target.

“This was a good friendly for us,” Rye manager Mike Robbins told www.kentishfooball.co.uk

“It was competitive for about an hour, when it was 2-1 to Rye, then their keeper dropped a simple shot in his net.

“But I am very happy with the workout - the facilities at Lydd are very good. I was surprised by the amount of supporters - they have a good following down here!.

Meanwhile, Rye United’s FA Cup extra preliminary round tie at home to Bedfont Green has now been officially switched.

The game will now be played at Yeading Football Club, The Warren, Beaconsfield Road, Hayes, Middlesex on Sunday 20th August.

If successful Robbins takes his side to his former club, Ashford Town in the next round.

Chatham Town,
who opened their pre-season campaign with a 2-1 defeat at Ramsgate, bounced back with a 3-0 win at Kent League side Herne Bay - despite missing a penalty.

Phil Miles’ side won the game at Winch’s Field through goals from Darren Smith and a Luke Harvey brace.

VCD Athletic’s ground improvements at their Oakwood ground are coming along.

The rails around the pitch are now complete with advertising boards erected.

The new boardroom has now arrived and is sited overlooking the main pitch. New windows have been ordered to give an even better view, which according to their website “will be unrivalled in the Kent League.”

The changing rooms are now complete and are worthy of a hotel room. The tea bar has now been built by the main entrance and is now being fitted out, together with the new walkway to the pitch which should be completed soon.

But the major concern is now the pitch with the contractors behind schedule. “They ensure us that it will be ready in plenty of time for the new season,” said a statement on

And Ryman League Division One South new boys Maidstone United may have found a new goalkeeper - joint manager Lloyd Hume.

Two of Hume’s clearances led to goals in the Stones’ 3-1 win at Bournemouth.

Pat Mullin, who injured himself in their opening pre-season friendly, during their goal-less draw at Hythe Town, is expected to return to the side in two weeks, thus enabling Hume to join Alan Walker inside the technical area.

The Kent League double winners have played three games so far - including a 5-2 defeat at Thamesmead Town.

If we've missed your club out - send in your match reports and press releases to us via the Contact us button.