The board has made the very difficult decision to withdraw our reserves from the SCEFL and change direction by applying for the Bostik U23 Development League, says Phoenix Sports chairman Andrew Mortlock

Friday 12th April 2019

PHOENIX SPORTS chairman Andrew Mortlock says the club will be withdrawing their reserve side from the Southern Counties East Football League at the end of the season, due to the costs of running the side in the First Division.

Del Oldfield’s side are in the bottom two in the division with 23 points from 29 games and are a couple points clear of Meridian VP, one point adrift of safety with four games left to play.

“The Phoenix board have been having discussions regarding our senior set up for the 2019-20 season and we are delighted that Paul Bryon has agreed to continue as first team manager of our Bostik South Eastern Division side,” Mr Mortlock told

“Following three seasons of running a reserve team in the Southern Counties East Football League First Division, the Board has made the very difficult decision to withdraw from the League and change direction by applying for the Bostik U23 Development League.

“This decision has predominantly been a financial one as running two senior sides has continued to prove costly.

“Moving our young reserve side to a mid-week league will give Phoenix Sports Club the opportunity to free up the pitch on a Saturday, opening up opportunities for the club to have discussions with other clubs about potential ground share scenarios.

“The U23’s team will still provide an excellent pathway for our talented young players to be able to make the transition from Youth to Senior football.

“This season alone we have had six players under the age of 18 take part in first team matches and our SCEFL squad has predominantly consisted of U18 players.

“Del Oldfield, our current reserve team manager, has decided that due to other commitments he will not take up the offer to manage the U23’s next season.

“This now means that we are looking for applications from interested parties for this new role so please email me at:

“Phoenix Sports would like to place on record our gratitude to Del for the excellent job he has done over the last three seasons managing Phoenix teams, and we hope that he will continue at the club in a different role.

“Phoenix Sports has a fantastic history and set up, and the Board as custodians want to continue to improve the facilities and playing opportunities for the local community, from our soccer school, U7’s and through to senior VETS. Hopefully by making these few changes this will give us a better platform to afford this development.

“We have all seen the terrible situation that happened to Thamesmead Town this season and how difficult managing a football club is, and where the outcome can be the demise of club's with long and proud histories.

“Phoenix Sports Club has a great future and in being operated in the correct way the Board is confident that the club will continue for many more years.”

Phoenix Sports Reserves host fourth-placed Kennington to Mayplace Road East tomorrow (15:00).

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